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By Dan Perrine
For The Record 

Bears beat Vidor in overtime

 

Last updated 10/9/2023 at 10:21am

The first game of district needed overtime to decide a winner. The Little Cypress Mauriceville Bears scored a touchdown on their first overtime possession to beat the Vidor Pirates 34-28 at Battlin' Bear Stadium on Friday night.

Little Cypress Mauriceville (3-3, 1-0) grabbed an early share of the district lead with the win. Vidor (3-3, 0-1) had its three game winning streak snapped.

The two county rivals matched each other very closely throughout the contest. Vidor took the initial lead, LCM rallied to go up by two scores, and the Pirates came back twice to force the overtime.

The opening quarter was scoreless but the Bears had a good chance to get on the board first. A short Pirate punt gave Little Cypress Mauriceville possession at the Vidor 43.

A pass on the first play went from Dylan Payne to Keagan Cockerham and the Pirates' were flagged for a personal foul penalty that gave the Bears a first down at the Vidor 18. Two runs by Jonah Fuller moved the ball to the Vidor 11.

The Bears then committed a procedure penalty moving the ball back to the 16. An incomplete pass brought fourth down and a 33-yard field goal by LCM was short and wide left.

The Little Cypress Mauriceville defense held the Vidor Slot-T running attack to one first down on its first two drives. On their third possession the Pirates began to find some running room.

Three runs gained a first down to midfield. Dane Villadsen ran for 13 yards and another first followed on the next play by Isaac Fontnow breaking loose on a 37-yard burst for the touchdown. Rui Correia added the point after for a 7-0 Vidor lead 48 seconds into the second quarter.

It was the Bears' turn to make their longest drive of the night. Payne connected with Cockerham on the first play for a first down to the LCM 38. Two runs by J'Lynn Morris and a keeper by Payne netted 32 yards and two first downs taking the ball to the Vidor 30.

Fuller found running room and matched the number on his jersey for 22 yards to the Pirates' 8. A procedure penalty on the Bears moved them back five yards, but Payne ran for ten yards and then scored on a three-yard run with 8:12 to play in the second quarter. The 74-yard scoring drive tied the game at seven.

The Battlin' Bear defense forced a punt from Vidor giving LCM possession at its 37. Payne and Cockerham hooked up for a third time good for 21 yards to the Vidor 42. A flanker around to Braylon Lewis went for 9 yards and Fuller matched that gain for a first down to the 24 of Vidor.

After a short pass completion Payne ran 13 yards to the 7 for a first down. On third down from the three Payne fought his way into the end zone for the score that put the Bears on top 14-7 with 2:18 left before the half.

With time running down before half time the Pirates attempted their only official pass attempt of the night. The Bears' Luke McDow made a diving interception to give Little Cypress Mauriceville the ball back with less than thirty seconds to do anything. The Bears made a first down but could only reach the 47 of Vidor to finish the second period.

Vidor received the second half kickoff and the Bears stopped three running plays by the Pirates for a net of minus yardage after another penalty on Vidor. The Pirate punter got under his kick which went straight up in the air and only traveled 12 yards to the Vidor 30.

LCM took advantage of the great field position. Fuller raced 22 yards for a first and goal at the four. Two plays later Payne ran the ball into the end zone for the score. After the successful kick from Nick Smith the Bears led 21-7 with 8:34 to go in the third quarter.

To their credit the Pirates responded quickly with a five-play drive that covered 75 yards. Fontnow made his second long run of the game this one for 42 yards to the Bears' 11.

Pirate fullback Riley Marlow bulled his way for six yards and then five yards for the touchdown. Correia's kick narrowed the Bear lead to seven points with 6:17 still to play in the third quarter.

The only turnover of the night for Little Cypress Mauriceville setup the tying score for Vidor. A bad snap on a Bear punt attempt gave the Pirates the ball at the Bears' 23. Fontnow ran the football three times the third from the four got him his second touchdown of the game and tied the score 21-21 with 2:42 remaining in the third period.

Jackson Smith who made a clutch kickoff return to help beat Bridge City earlier in the season returned the kick from Vidor over thirty yard to midfield for the Bears. Payne gained 11 yards on a third down and long for a first to keep the Bears in possession of the ball.

Fuller made three straight carries totaling 16 yards to the 21 of Vidor. Payne ran for ten yards and a first down at the 11.

With the Bears knocking on the door the Pirates put up a stand. Three run plays only got about four yards.

Coach Eric Peevey of the Bears decided to forego the field goal attempt of about 23 yards and went for it. Payne threw to the right sideline where Cockerham caught the ball and battled for every inch he could get. Keagan's extra effort was just enough to get the first down inside the one.

Payne got the last yard off of left tackle for his fourth touchdown of the game. The Bears led 28-21 with 8:35 left in the fourth quarter.

Nobody from Vidor was going home though after the Pirates took possession at their 37. Alternating with runs by Marlow, Villadsen, and Fontnow the Pirates methodically moved the ball into Bear territory.

Two penalties on Vidor and a nice stop by Tucker Floyd of the Bears put the Pirates' backs to the wall facing third and fourteen from the 42 of LCM. The Pirates ran play action that caught the Bears off guard and quarterback Daigan Venable threw a deep pass for Jayden Jones who did not catch the ball but the officials ruled pass interference on LCM for a first down at the 27.

The Pirates went back to what brought them there. Nine running plays by Marlow, Fontnow, and the last by Venable from the one got the touchdown followed by the extra point that tied the game with only 26 seconds left in regulation.

The Bears got two first downs on Payne passes to Khayden Reed. Not wanting to chance a freak turnover touchdown the Bears had Payne take a knee to finish the fourth quarter.

Little Cypress Mauriceville won the coin toss and as is the normal strategy elected to defend initially. The Bears were tough giving one yard, five yards, and then stopping Marlow for a loss of one yard. On fourth down and needing five yards to continue on offense Vidor handed the ball to Jaecob Titman for his only carry of the night and the Bears swarmed him for a three yard loss.

Any score by LCM on its first possession of the overtime would mean a victory. It started promising Fuller and Payne combining for nine yards on the ground on the first two plays. Fuller got a first down with a short carry to the 15 on which Vidor made its fourteenth penalty in the game with an unsportsmanlike gesture that moved the ball to the seven.

Little Cypress Mauriceville was flagged for holding on a one yard run by Payne which moved the ball back to the 16. Fuller ran for three yards, and then Payne threw a quick pass to the left sideline which Reed caught and stepped inside past his defender for the winning touchdown.

It was another wonderful game for LCM quarterback Dylan Payne who ran for 108 yards on 24 carries with four touchdowns. Payne completed 9 of 19 passes for 101 yards including the winning touchdown.

Jonah Fuller also surpassed a hundred yards on the ground with 115 yards on 19 carries. Khayden Reed was the leading receiver for the Bears with five catches for 52 yards while Keagan Cockerham caught 4 passes totaling 49 yards.

All of Vidor's yards were on the ground. Isaac Fontnow led all rushers in the game with 134 yards on 16 carries and had two touchdowns. Riley Marlow made 20 rushes for 93 yards and one score.

Next week the Little Cypress Mauriceville Bears play at home against the Livingston Lions. The Vidor Pirates face the Lumberton Raiders in Vidor.

 

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