Class 3A: Heritage Hall falls short, loses to Cascia Hall

Barry J. Sanders fails to score from 1-yard line in final seconds of semifinal
BY JASON KERSEY, Staff Writer, jkersey@opubco.com Published: December 2, 2011

STILLWATER — All Heritage Hall needed was a yard.

Down seven points with under a minute remaining, there was little doubt where the ball was going — into the arms of the best college football prospect in the state.

Barry J. Sanders took the handoff, jumped toward the end zone and was stuffed, sealing a stunning 14-7 upset for Cascia Hall in Friday's Class 3A semifinal at Pioneer Stadium.

The No. 3-ranked Commandos will face No. 2 Anadarko in next week's state championship game.

“I do think the ball crossed the line, and I think that's where instant replay would've been great,” Sanders said.

“It was close. The coaches wanted me to get over, and I just wasn't able to.”

Heritage Hall coach Andy Bogert, who runs things from the press box and had a bird's-eye view, disagreed.

“Even if it was close, I didn't think he got in,” Bogert said. “There wasn't any controversy there at all.

“That was a great goal-line stand; one of the best I've seen.”

Regardless, Class 3A's No. 1-ranked team and defending champion, which features many of the top players in the state, won't suit up for next week's state title game.

“It hasn't really settled because we're not used to going out like that,” said senior receiver Sterling Shepard, an Oklahoma verbal commit.

“It was a great run, though.”

The Chargers entered Friday's semifinal averaging nearly 53 points a game, but Cascia Hall's defense limited Heritage Hall's ability to throw the ball.

The Chargers didn't help themselves, either. Shepard dropped three passes in the first half — one of which was a sure touchdown — and Heritage Hall came away with no points on two of its three first-half redzone trips.

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