Wildcats escape Mustangs, 25-22

It was a classic slugfest at Wildcat Stadium on Friday night, with Mount Enterprise (2-1) delivering the knockout punch in the final minutes of play of a 25-22 victory over Overton.

Zack Moore, the Wildcats sophomore quarterback, hit senior tight end Grant Grubbs over the middle from 27 yards out for the go-ahead touchdown with 3:45 left in the fourth.

Down 25-22 with time running out, Overton (0-3) drove to midfield before the drive stalled.

On fourth and long the Mustangs own sophomore quarterback K.J. Luster rolled to the right and fired a tight spiral to junior wideout Dalton Jeffers.

But the pass was knocked away by Wildcats senior defensive back Kyle Benevidez to ice the win.

Overton head coach/athletic director Bo Talkington was pleased with how his team raised their level of play, matching Mount Enterprise on both sides of the ball as well as on the scoreboard.

“The team really worked hard,” he said. “You hate to lose a game in the final minutes, but the kids stayed in it to the end and never gave up […] they’ve made a lot of progress (through three games) and will continue to get better.”

In an evenly-matched contest, there were five lead changes, with both teams finding success on the ground and through the air.

While Overton held an advantage in total yardage (337-198) and turnovers (4-2), Mount Enterprise relied on several big plays to hold off the Mustangs methodical ground game.

“Overall, we did a good job of holding the offense, we just gave up too many big plays down the stretch,” Talkington said. “We had opportunities to put the game away but just weren’t able to capitalize on them.”

Benevidez led all Wildcats ball carriers with 59 yards on 15 rushes with two touchdowns. Sophomore halfback Reggie Carter broke loose for 55 yards on 12 carries and a score. Grubbs caught three passes for 41 yards and another touchdown.

Overton senior fullback Shelton Rogers paced the Mustangs, pounding at the defense with 12 rushes for 69 yards and two touchdowns.

Rogers also blew up the middle of the offensive line on several occasions from the nose tackle position, forcing Mount Enterprise to run mostly to the outside to gain positive yardage.

Overton juniors Forrest Lee and Tim Hawkins contributed 65 and 54 yards on the ground, respectively, with Hawkins scoring once on a 45-yard gallop in the third quarter.

Luster completed 4-for-6 passes for 59 yards and no interceptions, converting three fourth downs through the air. Mustang junior wideout Derek Graham caught two passes for 31 yards, with junior tight end Spencer Wright catching two passes for 25 yards.

Defensively, sophomore Greg Moore (6’2″ 241lbs) made eight tackles and two sacks in his first game at the outside linebacker position. Senior defensive lineman Dylan Lantz had 12 tackles and junior middle linebacker Forrest Lee pulled down 19 Wildcat ball-carriers.

“We’re playing tough hard-nosed football up the middle, we just need to contain better and not give up the big play,” Talkington added. “But it’s coming together now, and we’ve improved with each game.”

Next week, Overton travels to Cushing to face the 2-1 Bearkats. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

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