PERKINS — Just when the game looked headed to overtime, junior quarterback Kyle Duke and the Bethany Bronchos pulled out one last bit of magic to cap a wild Friday night against Perkins-Tryon.
Duke's 33-yard pass to Dalton Stout on fourth down with more than 20 yards to go set up Mathew McGarry for a 22-yard field goal with seven seconds to play.
The kick sailed through the uprights and gave Bethany a 32-29 win over the Perkins-Tryon Demons at McIlvain Field in Perkins.
“It was one of the wilder games I've been a part of,” Bethany coach Reagan Roof said. “Maybe the wildest. I don't know how well we played, but we played well enough at the times we needed to.”
The Bronchos (4-1, 2-0) took a 10-point lead into halftime, but Perkins-Tryon's (2-3, 0-2) rushing attack and junior quarterback Zac Bledsoe came out on fire in the second half, grabbing a 14-10 lead in the third quarter.
That's when things got interesting.
After the two teams traded scores throughout the second half — including a 68-yard run by Bledsoe — the Demons ended up tying the game with 49 seconds left after Bledsoe hit John Sasser for a 25-yard touchdown.
But after an apparent onside kick attempt, Bethany got the ball on its own 46 before running a hook-and-ladder play for 27 yards.
After two stalled runs and a sack, Duke heaved the ball downfield to Stout, and the rest was history.
“I'm speechless,” Duke said. “I had a lot of faith in my team. We can fight it out until the very end, and that's what we did tonight.”
Duke finished 12-of-18 for 260 yards and two touchdowns along with 89 rushing yards and a score.
Despite battling a leg injury, Bledsoe put up 115 rushing yards, 125 passing yards and three total touchdowns.
“3A-2 is a tough district,” Perkins-Tryon coach Lloyd Wertman said. “We're not going to feel sorry for ourselves. We've got to fight back, and we will with this bunch.”
Next Friday, Perkins-Tryon hits the road to face Prague, while Bethany hosts Seminole.