The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Sports

November 1, 2013

Tigers hold on for historic win

ELWOOD, Ind. — Bryce Montgomery never stopped believing.

In a game filled with big plays from big-name stars, the Alexandria sophomore trumped them all. Blitzing from the left side of Elwood’s offensive formation, Montgomery pulled down Panthers quarterback Alex Mireles on a 2-point conversion attempt with 28.3 seconds left, and the Tigers held on for a 27-26 victory.

Just four years after completing a third consecutive 0-10 campaign, Alexandria (8-3) will play in its first sectional final next week at Oak Hill (8-3).

“How cool is that?” Tigers head coach Pete Gast said as his players serenaded fans on the far sideline behind him.

Alexandria’s historic win didn’t come easily.

Elwood (7-4) intercepted Tigers quarterback Blaize Kelly twice in the final 7:24 but couldn’t erase a seven-point fourth-quarter deficit.

Both interceptions came from Panthers defensive back London Leavell, with the second turnover giving the home team the ball at its own 19-yard line with 2:43 left in the game.

After incurring two of its 13 penalties, Elwood faced third-and-26 at its own 35 with 1:39 to play. That’s when Leavell found tight end Jared Bourff for a 30-yard gain off a trick play and put the Panthers back in business.

A few snaps later, Elwood star Sammy Mireles rumbled 15 yards into end zone after receiving a swing pass from his brother to pull the Panthers within one point with less than 30 seconds to play. After a timeout, Elwood coach Marty Wells decided to go for two points and the win.

But the conversion was blown up when Montgomery tracked Alex Mireles down deep in his own backfield and made the biggest sack in program history.

Evan Hodges recovered the onside kick attempt moments later at his own 49-yard line, and the Alexandria celebration began.

“We have great coaches, great kids, great fans and a great community,” Gast said. “Everybody believed. I told them Monday we were going to win this football game.”

Kelly, who completed 23 of 35 passes for 300 yards and one score, put the Tigers in front with a 1-yard touchdown run on the game’s opening drive.

Elwood answered with a 15-yard touchdown pass from Alex Mireles to Bourff, and the visitors went back on top after a 7-yard scoring run by Hodges. He finished with 76 yards and two touchdowns on 15 carries.

Elwood tied the game with the only score of the second quarter, a 1-yard touchdown run by Sammy Mireles. The state’s all-time leading rusher went over the 8,000-yard mark for his career during the contest and finished his final high school game with 196 yards on 29 attempts.

Alexandria regained the lead for good on a 6-yard run by Hodges with 8:05 to play in the third quarter. Sammy Mireles answered with a 3-yard run just less than five minutes later, but the extra-point attempt was no good and the Tigers maintained a 21-20 advantage.

Kelly threw an 8-yard touchdown pass to Anthony Thomas on fourth-and-goal with 11:50 to play in the game to extend the lead. The extra-point try was blocked, setting up the fourth-quarter drama and ultimately the Tigers’ unforgettable win.

“We have a great team,” Gast said. “We don’t have stars. We just have a great football team. They all believed, and I love these guys.”

1
Text Only
Sports
  • SPT - HB0418 - PHHS vs Alex - 017 Arabians hold off Alex to reach semifinals Good teams don't need much help. That didn't stop Pendleton Heights from accepting a little aid from Alexandria in the second round of the Nick Muller Memorial Baseball Tournament on Thursday.

    April 17, 2014 3 Photos

  • Panthers claw way into softball semis If only Elwood's Jessie Noone had missed the team bus, Thursday's game in the Madison County Softball Tournament would have been more competitive.

    April 17, 2014

  • Ravens drove Manchester to avoid sweep NORTH MANCHESTER — The Anderson University baseball team defeated Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference leader Manchester University 9-5 on Wednesday at Gratz Field. Andrew Eiler led the Raven offense with three hits, three runs and an RBI, including one of four home runs the visitors hit.

    April 17, 2014

  • Elwood, Liberty Christian advance in county softball tournament The 2014 Madison County Softball tournament got off to a wild start at Liberty Christian on Wednesday night as Elwood and the host Liberty Christian Lions advanced with victories.

    April 17, 2014

  • SPT - HB0417 - Nick Muller - 05 Bulldogs, Indians impress in openers Lapel and Anderson have very different histories in the Nick Muller Memorial Baseball Tournament.

    April 16, 2014 5 Photos

  • SPT - HB0417 - Pendleton v Mad Grant 2 Eagles, Arabians move to second round Frankton got off to an uneven start, falling behind 4-3 and 6-4, but rallied for a 14-6 triumph over Alexandria in the first round of the Madison County Softball Tournament here Wednesday. In the second contest, Pendleton Heights topped Madison-Grant 2-1 in a game where both runs and hits were at a premium.

    April 16, 2014 3 Photos

  • Rick Bramwell: Improving weather should aid morels When I looked at my wilted daffodils Tuesday morning, I knew this would be a setback for morels. The long-range forecast through April 29 calls for near normal temperatures and above normal precipitation. This is good news for the blacks and grays.

    April 16, 2014

  • SPL - PT041014 - Ken de la Bastide column - Ken sig Ken de la Bastide: Hunter-Reay's blunder proves costly A lack of patience cost Ryan Hunter-Reay and teammate James Hinchcliffe a chance at victory last weekend in the Verizon IndyCar Series race at Long Beach.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0416 - tennis file - 14 Many girls tennis teams return top talent With spring sports getting off to a good start thanks to some spring-like weather last week, local girls tennis teams are taking to the court.

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • Wild week will get later start The busiest week on Madison County's high school sports calendar is going to start a day later than expected.

    April 14, 2014