High School Football

State football finals: Mayfield works overtime to claim 11th championship

Mayfield's team celebrates after winning the Class 1A KHSAA high school football championship game in Bowling Green, Ky. Mayfield won 28-27 in overtime. (AP Photo/The Daily News, Bac To Trong)
Mayfield's team celebrates after winning the Class 1A KHSAA high school football championship game in Bowling Green, Ky. Mayfield won 28-27 in overtime. (AP Photo/The Daily News, Bac To Trong) AP

BOWLING GREEN — Mayfield won another state title Saturday, its third in a row, fifth under Coach Joe Morris, and 11th overall.

"It's crazy, isn't it?" Morris said of the Cardinals' bounty of football success.

While Mayfield celebrated with hugs and high-fives, and shed a few tears, the raw emotion was across the field at WKU's L.T. Smith Stadium.

Mayfield's 28-27 victory over Williamsburg in overtime in the Russell Athletic/KHSAA Class A championship game left the Yellow Jackets devastated and in despair.

Unlike last year, when Mayfield routed Williamsburg 42-0 in the finals, the Jackets could've, maybe should've, won the rematch.

"This is terrible," senior quarterback/cornerback Skyler Griffith said. "This is the worst feeling I've ever had. The worst part is we only lost by one point. I could never imagine going out this way."

Williamsburg got the ball first in overtime. It scored on the first play from the 10-yard line, with Griffith hitting Darrell White with a TD pass.

The routine extra point was anything but routine, though. Brantly Patrick missed the kick.

Mayfield, down 27-21, got its turn in overtime, and it struck quickly, too, on Trajon Bright's 10-yard run. The Cards won it when Sidney Herndon added the kick.

Mayfield's players swarmed each other in celebration. Williamsburg's players dropped to their knees or walked off the field in a daze.

"I'm so proud of our kids. They played so hard," Coach Jerry Herron said. "We're all sad and disappointed."

Williamsburg outplayed Mayfield most of the day, cheered on by its orange-clad fans in the crowd of 6,333. But the Jackets made too many mistakes. It lost two fumbles, had a punt blocked, and three times drove inside the Mayfield 5-yard line only to come away with a pair of field goals.

"If we score those touchdowns, we win the game going away," Herron said. "But that's high school football. You make mistakes, do things wrong, and coaches call bad plays to screw things up for the kids."

Still, the Jackets battled.

Down 21-13 midway through the fourth quarter, they rallied to tie it. Griffith led a five-play, 79-yard drive that culminated with Corey Shelton making a juggling grab of a 31-yard TD pass.

Williamsburg added the two-point conversion on a play that Herron said they "made up on the fly." Griffith tossed a pass to Fred Massey coming out of the backfield to tie it 21-21 with 4:10 left.

On Mayfield's next play, Austin Huskey intercepted a pass to give the Jackets the ball at the Cards' 40. But they couldn't take advantage. Patrick, who made field goals of 35 and 22 yards earlier in the game, missed a 35-yarder.

Williamsburg outgained Mayfield 372 yards to 187.

Griffith threw for 224 yards and two TDs. He ran for 53 yards and a score.

Shelton had five catches for 163 yards and a TD. Fred Massey rushed 21 times for 67 yards.

"They made it tough on us," Morris said. "They're big and strong, and they made a lot of big plays. But our guys made just enough plays to win the game, especially with our red-zone defense."

Sophomore quarterback Landon Arnett passed for 110 yards and a TD. Marshall Bacon had six catches for 69 yards. Bright ran 20 times for 56 yards.

"We had some unfortunate breaks and some turnovers that killed us," Herron said. "Mayfield just takes advantage of them. That's why they've won so many."

Related stories from Lexington Herald Leader

  Comments