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Canyon Goes for Tie With Loara in Final Minute--and Gets It


ORANGE — Canyon's normally wide-open offense became conservative and as a result, the Comanches settled for a 21-21 tie with Loara Thursday night at El Modena High School.

Canyon, which uses the run-and-shoot, rallied for a touchdown with 39 seconds left to close the gap to 21-20.

After a timeout, Canyon Coach Bob Hughes sent in kicker Casey Wilson to kick the game-tying extra point, which surprised those who expected a two-point attempt.

"Sure, we thought about going for two," Hughes said, "but we felt like getting one was important to the program . . . The two-pointer was no sure thing."

The tie leaves both teams 2-0-1.

Loara Coach John deFries was surprised Canyon didn't go for the victory. "Sure," he said when asked would he have gone for two. "We're here to win games."

Canyon had started the final drive after an interception by Gunnar Strunz at the Comanche 43 with four minutes 18 seconds left.

The drive was keyed by a 26-yard completion from quarterback Adam Hoover to Greg Jacobs. The play gave Canyon a first down at the Loara four. But it took the Comanches four plays to get the remaining yardage. The touchdown came on fourth down on a one-yard dive by Joel Reese.

Reese had scored on a 17-yard run in the third quarter to give Canyon a 14-7 lead. That touchdown was set up by an interception and 36-yard return by defensive end Paul Bottiaux.

KC Pelle had two first-half interceptions for Canyon, which also recovered four fumbles.

Loara came back to tie the score, 14-14, on a 14-yard pass from quarterback Jim Kirkland to wide receiver Floyd Tally with 3:47 left in the third.

The Saxons took a 21-14 lead on a 17-yard run by Korei Kilburn midway in the fourth quarter.

Loara's Vince Pla scored from 40 yards out on a draw with 42 seconds left in the half to tie the score, 7-7.

Pla and Kilburn filled in for starter Denis Dawson, who had 220 yards in the first two games but sat out this game with an ankle injury. Pla had 59 yards and Kilburn added 54.

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