The El Dorado Wildcats finally earned their first win of the 2012 campaign, and it could not have come at a greater time after beating the Thunderbirds in Towanda 35-34 in overtime Friday.
"We want to get to the point where this is not just a once-, twice-a-year type of thing, where we can compete and we can win. There are a lot of things that we have to get better at. I am proud of our kids they fought and battled, Garrett Hutson is a great player for Circle and luckily he missed that PAT and we scored and kicked to win," said El Dorado head coach Dustin Dooley.
With both squads tied at 28 points a piece at the end of regulation, the Thunderbirds took the ball on offense first in overtime.
The Thunderbirds were faced with a fourth-and-goal from the 1 yard line and quarterback Garrett Hutson found a seam in the El Dorado defense and scored.
Fortunately for the Wildcats, Hutson missed the PAT, opening the door for the Wildcats on their offensive possession.
El Dorado rode the legs of their emerging tailback Tucker Sherman, who took the ball from the 10 yard line to the 3 yard line and set up an all-or- nothing fourth-and-goal from the one play for the Wildcats.
Sherman found a hole and scored for the Cats to tie the game at 34-34 with the PAT coming up for the win.
"We made it, we were down and had to face some adversity, and finally it just opened up to me on that play and getting in there, and knowing that we could win it on the next play was a great feeling," said El Dorado running back Tucker Sherman.
On previous kicking attempts in the game, the Wildcats had missed a PAT, had a field goal blocked and, to win late in the fourth quarter, were unable to get the snap correctly, forcing overtime.
Holder Cole Reinhardt took the perfect snap and put it down as Travis House banged it through for the Wildcats win.
"It's amazing, we put in so much work this summer, it was amazing to get this win. I was just hoping Cole would get it down and I was going to make it no matter what, nothing but net pretty much," said El Dorado quarterback and kicker Travis House.
House ran for three touchdown scores from one yard, three yards and 12 yards for the Wildcats.
El Dorado took an early lead on the House one- yard run until Garrett Hutson tied the game on a 17-yard tote with less than three minutes to go in the first half.
El Dorado's Garrett Howland returned the ensuing kickoff 81 yards to help the Wildcats take a 14-7 lead at half time.
Page 2 of 2 - Circle took the ball first in the second half and wasted no time scoring, driving on the legs of running back Drake Fox, who tied the game at 14-14 with a two-yard plunge.
The Wildcats answered with the second of House's three touchdown runs to reclaim the lead at 20-14. El Dorado went up by two scores with House's third touchdown run and a House-to- Isaac Johnson two-point conversion was good to go up 28-14.
Circle was down but not out, and Hutson found his favorite big target Stewart Dennison for a 40-yard reception, then Hutson ran in from five yards to cut the T-Bird deficit in half.
Late in the fourth quarter, the T-Birds were faced with a fourth-and-7 play deep in Wildcats territory and Hutson found Dennison again, this time for the score to tie the game at 28-28.
A bad snap on a field goal attempt by El Dorado with seconds in regulation sent the game into overtime.
El Dorado goes to Hesston next week with a chance to make the playoffs with a victory over the Swathers.