Thursday night’s game did not start out the way the Raiders had planned. On Milton’s first possession of the game they drove the ball down the field to take an early 7-0 lead over North Forsyth. On the Raiders 2nd possession of the game an interception by the Eagles would lead to eventual score putting Milton up 14-0 by the end of the 1st quarter.
In the 2nd quarter, another interception by the Eagles defense would lead to another score extending their lead to 20-0. Later in the 2nd quarter, Milton would score again on a 36 yard run to go up 27-0. With just over 2 minutes left to go in the half, the Raiders drove down the field to score. Quarterback Drew Aucoin connected on a pass to tight end Riley Smith to get the ball down to the one yard line. On the very next play Aucoin would sneak it in for a touchdown making the score 27-6 to end the half.
THE COMEBACK WAS ON! (with a little help from some Coal Mountain Magic).
After a Milton fumble, the Raiders would march down the field with the help of 2 huge pass completions from Aucoin to wide receivers Jacob Durant & Jalavis Wilson. That would set up a 5 yard touchdown run by running back Tristan Graham bringing the Raiders closer with a score of 27-13 at the end of the 3rd quarter.
Milton would drive the field and score to start the 4th quarter and extend their lead to 34-13. On the next Raider drive, a 43 yard completion from Aucoin to wide receiver Will Peltz set up a 5 yard rushing touchdown by Aucoin inching the Raiders closer 34-20 with 7:00 left to go in the game. The Raiders would force another turnover when Jalavis Wilson intercepted a pass and returned it to the Milton 20 yard line. North would score from there capped off by Aucoin’s 3 rushing touchdown of the game. The score was now 34-27 with 5:28 left to go. The Raiders defense forced a 3 and out and the offense took advantage of the short field position and scored on a 6 rush by running back Patrick Corrigan to tie the game 34-34 with 2:25 left to go. The Raider defense would push the Milton offense back into the shadow of their own goal post and force another 3 and out. After moving the ball up the field from the good field position the Raiders would call their final timeout and set up field goal with 1.4 seconds left. However, Milton would block the field goal attempt by Will Peltz to send the game to overtime.
In over time each team would be given a chance to score on offence from the 15 yard line. The Raider got the ball first and kept the ball on the ground eventually leading to 4th rushing touchdown by Aucoin giving the Raiders their first lead of the game. Milton would block the extra point attempt to make the score 40-34 thus putting the pressure on the Raiders defense. North would answer the challenge. On Milton’s second play of overtime the Raiders defensive line would hurry the Eagles quarterback into a throw over the middle of the field that was intercepted by Bentley Wheeler sealing the comeback overtime victory for North Forsyth.
North ends the regular season with 4-2 overall record. The Raiders will play their final game of the season in a playoff game next Thursday at 6:00 pm. Location and opponent TBD.