Timber Creek made history on Friday, Sept. 25 by beating rival out Byron Nelson 57-54 in an exhilarating three-and-a-half-hour game. The game went on for five overtimes after regulation time making in an especially intense and hard fought victory for the Falcons.
During the first quarter Caleb Collins ran from the 1-yard line to collect his first rushing touchdown followed up by Benji Martinez’s PAT to make the score 7-0. Byron answered to make the score 7-7 by the end of the first quarter.
At the end of the first quarter Timber’s student section was very excited.
“The adrenaline and atmosphere is so intense, so much fun!” student Alex Smaney said about the student section.
In the second quarter, Byron got the first touchdown to go ahead by 7 points, but Timber wide receiver Eric Ezukanme quickly returned a kickoff for a touchdown to tie it up, 14-14.
Four minutes later (in game time), Caleb Collins ran 26-yards for another touchdown to make the score 21-14. Byron answered with two touchdowns of their own to make the score at halftime 21-28 with Byron on top.
Students still had high spirits and kept the atmosphere very lively during halftime.
The third quarter was one of the least productive yet still very tense with no points scored by either team. Timber’s student stayed loud and electric throughout the entire quarter.
The fourth quarter, while not as productive score-wise as the second, was maybe the most intense with Timber trailing 21-28. Running with vigor, accompanied by the cheers and chants of his classmates and team members Braxton Washington ran for a 6-yard touchdown to tie it up 28-28 with nine minutes and thirty seconds left in the quarter. Both teams held the other off for the rest of the quarter to lead us into the first overtime.
— Avery Vaughn (@avery_skyler) September 26, 2015
The rules for over time in high school are very close to those that are set for college teams by the NCAA, stating that each team will have one drive from the 25-yard line to do whatever they can to get points, this will repeat until there is a winner.
In the first overtime, Timber’s student section was as loud and excited as ever. With a chance to finally beat their rivals, they were going to chant their team to a win.
Byron had the first possession and scored a touchdown on a 25-yard pass which was coupled by Braxton Washington with a 4-yard run, making the score 35-35. At this point the tensions between the teams and the student sections were rising. Chants were yelled back and fourth taunting the opposing team and student sections. But that would only be the beginning of the shootout.
Timber had the first possession in the second overtime and scored a touchdown on a 3-yard pass to Recie Saunders from Caleb Collins. That score was answered by Byron Nelson with a 14-yard touchdown run. This made the score 42-42 going into the third overtime as neither team made extra points after the touchdowns.
The third overtime was very key. In this round both teams must go for a two point conversion if a touchdown is scored. Byron started out the round and ran it in for a touchdown but thanks to the Falcons defense did not get their extra points making the score 42-48. Timber answered with a pass from Caleb Collins to Jerome Jackson to tie it back up, 48-48, but the Falcons were not able to convert after the TD.
— Ash (@AshlanSmith) September 26, 2015
By the fourth overtime both teams were tired and so were the student sections, but neither let up. With the players continuing to play hard and the students cheering loudly, Benji Martinez kicked a 19-yard field goal for Timber Creek to make the score 51-48. That FG was answered by Byron to tie it up yet again, 51-51, going into a fifth overtime round. Both teams, now physically exhausted, kept battling back and fourth, never relenting or allowing their team to lose.
When asked if he has ever gone into five overtimes in the past, Head coach Kevin Golden said, “No, it is very very rare because in football the slightest mistake can keep you from scoring, and we were able to outlast them.”
“This year I down played it,” Golden said about how the team treated the rivalry game during practices. “We have had years where we talked up the game, this year we just wanted to go 1-0.”
In the fifth overtime, Byron had the ball first. Timber Creek had their defense hyped and ready to finish the game. Timber’s defense stayed cool under pressure which got under the Bobcats skin and caused players from Byron Nelson to commit an off sides and a personal foul. Those penalties took them back twenty yards to the 36-yard-line.
As the Byron Nelson student section watched their team march twenty yards in the wrong direction, they were eerily silent, but on the opposing side, the ecstatic Timber student section were roaring a chant “You can’t do that!” and jumping with excitement. Byron was forced to kick a 36-yard field goal making the score 48-51 with Byron on top, but Timber Creek had yet to get their turn.
The now energized Falcons drove to the 8-yard line where Caleb Collins got the last rushing touchdown of the day making the score 57-54. The Falcons had finally beat the Bobcats; becoming 1-0 in district. Watch the final touchdown and reaction to the game win below:
“I didn’t know we were going to win until Caleb Collins crossed the goal line, then I was looking around for flags and there were none, I really don’t know what I did after that,” Golden said.
After the win, the students erupted in cries of joy. The stands shook and the sound was deafening. Timber came together as a community and lifted up and praised their team. It was truly a thing of beauty.
With the win, Timber beat their rivals for the first time in both schools’ history and enter district play with a 1-0 record.