© Times-Herald photo by Matthew Gourlie
Nathan Fall of the Peacock Tornadoes, left, fights off the tackle of Weyburn's Rhett Williams as he scores one of his five touchdowns on the day.
After neither defence could stop touchdowns early, it seemed oddly fitting that a defensive touchdown ended up being the margin of victory.
Spencer Nancarrow’s five-yard interception return for a touchdown in the fourth quarter helped give Peacock a 42-33 win over Weyburn Saturday in Moose Jaw High School Football League.
“It was a good game for the crowd — lots of exciting offence. It was an exciting game for the fans, but not so exciting for the coaches,” said Peacock head coach Blake Buettner.
The two offences came out and traded big play after big play. After only 15:43 of action they had already combined for seven touchdowns as Peacock led 28-21 early in the second quarter.
“It seemed like the last team who had the ball was going to win it. Or the first team whose defence came to play,” said Weyburn head coach Darren Abel. “They just made a few more plays than we did.
“I think we’ll be better for this game. I think we were getting too big of a head in some ways.”
Incredibly the score was still 28-21 at the start of the fourth quarter as both defences began to assert themselves.
“We made a lot of mistakes, but we can learn from them and get better next week,” said Peacock linebacker Spencer Barrett who pressured Weyburn quarterback Kirk Winter to help force the interception to Nancarrow. “At half time we had a talk and figured out what we were doing wrong and sorted everything out. We moved some guys around and found what was going to fit our defensive personality the best.”
In a game full of momentum swings, there were three in the span of a few seconds early in the fourth quarter. Peacock’s Kyle Arndt connected on a 28-yard field goal to extend their lead to 10 points. However, the kick was called back due to an illegal substitution penalty and Arndt was just wide on the subsequent 33-yard attempt. Weyburn’s Reece Williams ran the miss back 118 yards for a touchdown. However, the Eagles missed the convert, which left the Tornadoes with a 28-27 lead.
“That was a coaching mistake,” Buettner said of the substitution penalty. “Coaches make mistakes too. We were putting a guy on for something else and it backfired.”
After Peacock got the ball back, Nathan Fall put the Tornadoes ahead by eight with his fifth touchdown of the day. Nancarrow’s pick-six put Peacock ahead 45-27 and looked like it iced the win, but Weyburn wasn’t about to quit.
Weyburn’s Rhett Williams scored on a 77 yard touchdown run, but the Eagles missed the two-point convert which left them two scores behind. They recovered the onside kick with 1:08 left, but weren’t able to score again.
“We finally got back to playing our football,” said Abel of their second half. “We just couldn’t overcome some of the mistakes we made. They’re a good team and if you make mistakes you pay.”
When neither team could stop the other in the early going, the Tornadoes special teams gave them a leg up. Dabulis Ebet ran 25 yards on a fake punt to prolong a drive and on the following kickoff, Peacock’s recovered an onside kick and scored again to take the lead for good.
“Our special teams did well. We asked them to do some things and they executed. Our special teams was one area we were really pleased with,” said Buettner.
Peacock is now 2-0, but Buettner feels they have a lot of work to do moving forward.
“I think our guys took Weyburn for granted,” said Buettner. “Obviously you can’t because they’re a very good team. Weyburn came out and played awesome. I thought they played really well. Give credit to them and their running game.
“We could have played better and we made a lot of mistakes. We have some growing to do and hopefully we learn from our mistakes. Obviously we have a ways to go defensively and we’ll have to get back to some fundamentals.”
Fall finished with 194 yards rushing, plus another 31 receiving yards that included an 11-yard touchdown.
Rhett Williams ran for 210 yards and two touchdowns, while Reece Williams had 123 yards rushing and three touchdowns.
“Reece Williams and Rhett Williams, the two twins, had a heck of a day running the ball. We kind of got away from that a bit towards the end and that’s kind of unfortunate. I thought we should have gone back to them a little more, but you have to try some new things as well,” said Abel.