Valencia field goal helps team to last-minute win

Valencia senior Jake Santos runs the ball in a Foothill League matchup with Hart at Cougar Stadium Friday night. Cory Rubin/The Signal
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In a rivalry match that’s usually an epic battle, the Vikings and Indians once again didn’t disappoint on College of the Canyons football field Friday.

Valencia kicker Ty Morrison helped the Vikings to a win thanks to his 27-yard field goal with 41 seconds left in regulation, sealing a 29-27 win.

While Hart came into the game with all the momentum of a four-game win streak, it was Valencia that got on the scoreboard first.

Hart senior Taden Littleford runs the ball in a Foothill League matchup with Valencia at Cougar Stadium Friday night. Cory Rubin/The Signal

Valencia responded to Hart’s three-and-out opening drive with Ryan Morrison throwing a 22-yard strike to Austin Genovese with 8:24 left in the first quarter to help the Vikings take a 7-0 lead.

Creating the building blocks of what would eventually become a back-and-forth game between the two teams, Hart’s Taden Littleford took a 5-yard run into the end zone with 5:51 left in the first to tie the score at 7-7.

Valencia’s Morrison and Zamondre Merriweather connected to bring the score to 14-7 with 9:38 left in the second quarter.

In Hart’s fifth drive of the game, the Indians got the ball back with 3:23 left in the first half on their own 42-yard line. With 1:18 on the clock, Hart’s signal-caller Zach Johnson connected with wide receiver Angelo Lucchese on a 32-yard strike.

Coming into the second half, Morrison connected for his third touchdown of the night with Brandon Tompkins on a 39-yard streak route.

Hart senior Taden Littleford catches the the ball on the sideline in a Foothill League matchup with Valencia at Cougar Stadium Friday night. Cory Rubin/The Signal

Hart’s Ashton Thomas was able to block the extra point and bring the score to 20-14 for the Vikings.

Hart’s first play of the fourth quarter was a 34-yard Johnson pass laid in the basket of Dylan Vradenburg. The extra point, with 11:50 left on the clock, gave the Indians their first lead of the game, 21-20.

Getting the ball back late in the fourth quarter, the Vikings took their shots down the field. After a 14-yard drive, Morrison connected for his fourth touchdown of the night to the Vikings Mitchell Torres on a 6-yard pass to the pylon.

A score of 26-21 lead Vikings coach Larry Muir to going for the two-point conversion. The conversion failed, and Valencia’s senior running back Jake Santos was injured on the play.

Hart got the ball back with a little over five minutes on the clock. In a last ditch effort with 4:27 left in regulation, Johnson connected with Thomas for a 77-yard touchdown for the score, giving Hart the lead 27-26.

Valencia senior Jake Santos runs the ball in a Foothill League matchup with Hart at Cougar Stadium Friday night. Cory Rubin/The Signal

Four penalties took the Vikings to a second-and-30 with 3:30 in the fourth. The Vikings were able to gain ground back, however, and with 2:08 on the clock they were in a fourth-and-one situation.

Muir called a timeout.

On the following play Valencia picked up the first on a quarterback sneak.

As the clock ticked down, Muir then gave Ty Morrison the call.

Valencia moved to 4-3 on the season with the win, 2-0 in Foothill League; while Hart moved to 5-2 on the season and 1-1 in league play.

Hart faces Canyon next week on the road, and Valencia is set to play Golden Valley.

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