by Gary Andrews
A failed two point conversion attempt with no time on the clock was all that separated Northfield from taking Tippecanoe Valley in to overtime Friday as the Norse fell to the Vikings 34-32.
Trailing by 8, Northfield scored as time expired to cut the lead to 34-32 with a two point conversion pass being knocked down to decide the outcome.
With the rain coming down the passing game for both teams was pretty much non-existent, forcing both ground games to grind it out. Valley would notch the only score in the first quarter on a 2-yard run coming with 44.8 seconds left on the clock to lead 6-0 after one.
With both teams still trying to establish a ground game the Vikings went to the air midway through the second quarter, connecting on a 76 yard scoring strike with 4:30 remaining to go up 12-0. For the second time the extra point attempt failed. Northfield would respond, riding the backs of Shane Vigar and Josh Bickel to Norse mounted a drive that ended with a 1 yard scoring run from Carter Frieden with 2:24 left to trail 12-6 at the half.
Northfield would strike first in the third quarter, scoring on a 9 yard Josh Bickel run to knot the score at 12 with 8:56 still left in the third. Valley would answer five minutes later, again with the extra point failing and led the Norse 18-12 with a quarter to go.
With both defenses controlling most of the game, the fourth quarter was quite the opposite with the two teams combining for 36 points. Valley would get on the board first on a 1 yard run with 8:21 remaining to increase their lead to 26-12. The Norse, refusing to give in responded. Behind Carter Frieden the Norse marched down the field on their next possession, finding pay dirt on a Shane Vigar TD reception with 5:54 left. A Rodriguez extra point made it 26-19. After stopping the Vikings, an arrant punt gave the Norse great field position. Northfield quickly made Valley pay with Frieden racing down the left side for a 28-yard touchdown with 2:40 left.
Again Rodriguez converted and the game was tied at 26. Valley was mounting a drive on the ground after the Norse score when they caught Northfield off guard on a 38 yard scoring pass play with 52 seconds remaining to lead 32-26. The Vikings went for two and converted and led the Norse 34-26 with .52 on the clock. Josh Bickel would take the Valley kick off out to the 44 to give Northfield hope with 44 seconds remaining. Bickel would the run to the Valley 35, when a pass interference call gave Northfield the ball on the 12 with 28 seconds left.
After the Norse stopped the clock on a spike, Shane Vigar ran to the 3 with 3 seconds left and calling time out. Carter Frieden would then score from 3 yards out as time expired to make it 34-32 and the extra point try coming. The two-point pass was knocked down by a linebacker to spoil the comeback as the Norse fell 34-22.