Tigers edge Eagles, earn spot in section championship game
For the first time all season, the Nevis 9-man football team was in a battle until the end during Saturday afternoon's Section 6 semifinal game.
But as was the case in the previous nine games, the Tigers were victorious.
Nevis, the No. 1 seed in the section, entered this playoff game averaging 44.7 points a game while allowing 12.9 points. Norman County East, the No. 5 seed, held the Tigers' offense in check, but Nevis was able to advance with an 18-13 victory.
After being held scoreless in the first quarter, the Tigers took a 6-0 lead on a 30-yard touchdown run by Gavin Hitchcock midway through the second quarter.
The Eagles countered on a 21-yard TD pass to take a 7-6 lead with 54 seconds to play in the first half.
Nevis responded when Collin Huckbody hit Taylor Chase on a 43-yard TD pass with 12 seconds remaining. That gave the Tigers a 12-7 lead at the break.
Huckbody's 57-yard TD run pushed the lead to 18-7 in the third quarter.
NCE scored on another TD pass late in the fourth quarter, but the Tigers held on for the win.
Huckbody led Nevis' offense with 23 carries for 160 yards and 107 yards passing. Hitchcock rushed six times for 34 yards and Chase caught three passes for 61 yards as Nevis compiled 324 yards.
Defensively, Austin Becker and Robbie Hine made seven solo tackles each. Huckbody recovered a fumble for Nevis' only turnover.
Norman County East ended the season with a 5-5 record.
Nevis will carry a 10-0 record into Thursday's section championship game against No. 2 Ada-Borup. The Cougars are 9-1 on the season and have won the section title the last four years, including a 37-7 win over Nevis in 2010. The Tigers are rated No. 5 in the latest state poll while Ada-Borup is rated No. 8.
Kickoff for the Section 6 title game at the Fargodome is set for 3 Thursday afternoon.
Norman Co. East 0 7 0 6.....13
Nevis 0 12 6 0...18
N-Hitchcock 30 run (PAT failed)
N-T. Chase 43 pass from C. Huckbody (PAT failed)
N-C. Huckbody 57 run (PAT failed)
NEVIS OFFENSIVE STATISTICS
RUSHING: C. Huckbody 23-160, Hitchcock 6-34, Hine 10-22, A. Becker 1-1.
PASSING: C. Huckbody 8-15-1 for 107 yards.
RECEIVING: T. Chase 3-61, Beckerleg 2-36, G. Becker 1-5, Hine 2-5.
NEVIS DEFENSIVE STATISTICS
SOLO TACKLES: A. Becker 7, Hine 7, C. Huckbody 4, Beckerleg 4, C. Chase 3, Halik 3, Keranen 3, Hitchcock 2, T. Chase 2, S. Huckbody 2, Dudley 1.
ASSISTED TACKLES: C. Huckbody 4, Halik 4, Dudley 4, Hine 4, Beckerleg 3, C. Chase 1, Hitchcock 1, T. Chase 1.
QUARTERBACK SACKS: C. Huckbody 1.
FUMBLE RECOVERIES: C. Huckbody 1.