RIVERSIDE — The host Carroll Patriots gave playoff-bound Fenwick everything they could handle, Oct. 26, in a rain-soaked 42-41 loss at Patriot Stadium.
Despite a persistent and cold rain, Patriots quarterback Trent Fox completed half his passes (18 for 36) for 189 yards, with three touchdown strikes to Sam Severt, and another to Donovan Lajeunesse. The Brahma bull, also known as Frederick Butts, bashed his way through the Fenwick defense for two touchdowns. Butts gained a game-high 155 yards on the ground on 22 carries.
Butts also led the Pats in tackles with eight.
The difference in the score came down to one gadget play on Fenwick’s final extra-point attempt. And why not?
Still barely alive in the Division III, Region 12 playoff race, Carroll needed a win over the Falcons to see a Week 11 postseason playoff, and some upsets of around three or four teams rated ahead of them, so they knew that a tie wasn’t going to help the situation. Fenwick had already qualified for the playoffs last week, but they wanted the win in order to host a first-round contest next week.
And so trailing 42-41 with 2:14 left in the game, Carroll gambled.
With placekicker Kade Greer lined up to boot the tying extra point, holder Will Severt instead tried to flip the ball to Steven Chapman who was in a full-speed run around the left side of the Patriots line. The toss appeared to go high and behind Chapman, however, and the Carroll back-up QB had no other choice but to fall on the errant pitch.
The Patriots (6-4) did get another last-gasp try at at least getting into field goal range in the closing seconds of the game, but their final drive stalled out with an incomplete pass from the Carroll 43-yard line with 6.7 seconds left in the contest. Fenwick then took over, took a knee and ran out the clock to preserve the win.
Fenwick (8-2) clinched a playoff home game with the narrow win. According to JoeEitel.com, the Falcons will end up the regular season as the region’s No. 2 seed behind Alter. If JoeEitel’s figures are correct, the Falcons will host Trotwood-Madison in the opening round.
Carroll finished the season vastly improved over the 2017 campaign’s 1-9 record. Greater Catholic League Co-Ed records go back to the 2013 season, and the Patriots’ 6-4 regular-season finish in 2018 is the best during that time frame.
Contact John Bombatch at 937-372-4444, Ext. 2123.