Decatur edges WiHi in final seconds in playoff thriller
Eastlick's GW FG lifts Sehawks to state quaters
SALISBURY, Md- The Stephen Decatur football team kept their season alive on Friday night, defeating WiHi 30-27 in a MPSSAA 2A East regional matchup.
WiHi would jump out to a 6-0 lead on the first play from scrimmage, when Malique Leatherbury jumped an Ashten Snelsire pass and took it 16-yards to the end zone.
The Seahawks would answer back minutes later, with Snelsire hitting Brycen Coleman with a 13-yard touchdown to take a 7-6 lead.
After a Brogan Eastlick (Decatur) field goal, WiHi would take a 12-10 lead early in the second quarter– with Leatherbury recording his first receiving touchdown of the game.
Decatur would fire right back just three minutes later, with Snelsire hitting his second touchdown of the game–a crossing pattern to Luke Mergott. Mergott would take the pass 40-yards thru the WiHi defense to give his ‘Hawks a 17-12 lead.
Just before the half, Mergott and the Seahawk defense would get a crucial stop– holding WiHi out of the end zone on fourth and goal from the 5-yard line as time expired.
WiHi would regain the lead with 7:53 left in the third off a TC Cottman-Trader 2-yard score. Darius Foreman would power in the two point conversion to give the Tribe a 20-17 lead.
After the teams traded punts late in the third, the Sehawks would again find the equilizer. Eastlick would trot out to try–and eventually nail a 44-yard field goal to even the game at 20 headed to the fourth quarter.
The Tribe would strike first in the fourth–with Leatherbury taking in his third total touchdown of the night on a dazzling 23-yard touchdown catch.
Trailing 27-20 in the fourth, Snelsire and the Decatur offense would again put together a surgical drive. The senior quarterback would push his team inside the WiHi red zone, and find sophomore Gavin Solito to lock the game at 27 with 6:11 remaining.
Solito would then pick off Foreman on the next drive, handing the ball back to his offense with less than five minutes to play.
Snelsire and the Decatur offense would begin to bleed the clock, getting big plays from Zimere Handy on the drive to get the ball to the WiHi 5-yard line, with under 20 seconds to play.
Once again, Eastlick would step up and deliver. His 22-yard field goal with 0:13 seconds remaining gave Decatur a 30-27 lead.
With the ball deep in their own territory–a final WiHi throw would fall incomplete, sending the Seahawks soaring into the win column.
The victory is the first road playoff win in Decatur head coach Jake Coleman’s 10-plus year coaching career.
Decatur will await their matchup as the final eight teams in 2A are re-seeded for state quarterfinals.