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football winslow catch Photo by Bruce BarberWinning touchdown catch by Luke Winslow. Photo by Bruce Barber

First, this is the regular season. Secondly, few wins have come in such dramatic fashion in Lansing football lore. Just a couple winning examples of the rich football history at LHS are a last ditch deep ball from Kevin Snyder to John Barney in the Trumansburg snow. Barney is boys soccer coach Benji Parkes uncle. And there was "The Fumble" when Buddy Balog returned a 95 yard fumble recovery at Schoellkopf Field for a TD and sectional victory.

The Elmira Notre Dame Crusaders were in town on Lansing's Senior Night to revenge their only loss of the season to Lansing for each teams first game in September. The Bobcats first drive was taken to inside the 10 of the opponent but a sack squandered this drive. Two dropped passes by Lansing receivers in the first and second quarters for apparent touchdowns kept them off the board at halftime. It was apparent this was a different type of game that this 8-man competition has been accustomed to thus far – an actual defensive low scoring affair. LB Griffen Nelson intercepted an END pass deep in Lansing territory just prior to half and tailback Luke Winslows 57 yard run well into the Notre Dame side of the field wasn not quite enough as the clock ended the second quarter with the Bobcats down 6-0.

The second half started on a positive note for Lansing with outside contain Ben Vincent recovering a short kickoff on the visitor sideline. The kickoff recovery resulted with nothing to show for it, for now. The END QB scored on a 26 yard run at 4:42 left in the quarter and the successful PAT gave a 14-0 lead for the visitors. The endzone seemed to have a veil of elusion for Lansing on this night. To add to any mounting frustrations the Bobcats were facing an actual 3rd and 53 situation from their own 18. Has anybody ever seen an any down and 53 yards to go? The clock keeper Don Hradisky may have needed his calculator on that one.

With under a minute gone in the final quarter MLB Nelson for the Bobcats was injured. Arguably the glue of the Lansing defense would be out for the rest of the game (except one play late in the game). Just as Lansing had made a couple costly penalties and miscues END mustered only a 6 yard punt and the Cats had the ball on the visitors 35. Winslow promptly tossed a TD pass to Garrett Bell and Bell also made good on the PAT run to cut the score to a 14-8 deficit well into the fourth. Bells booming kickoff for a touchback was shortlived as the END QB made good on a 62 yard sneak. If not for Ben Vincent chasing him down at the 18 yard line a score may have been too much to overcome. Defensive tackle and Senior stand out Tucker Butler made possibly his biggest play of the game with a tackle for loss and forcing a punting decision by END to attempt to pin Lansing deep in their own territory with a couple minutes remaining. Fortunes were turning the home teams way as the punt was partially blocked and recovered near the line of scrimmage by none other than Tucker Butler. Lansing had to go 66 yards in 2:01 for a tying TD.

A Bell to Vincent pass play to the END 45 got some momentum. Bell made a long QB run of his own up the middle all the way to the Notre Dame 8 yard line. A run and a big END sack of Bell found Lansing looking for answers now at their 22 yard line and the clock running with less than 20 ticks remaining. Under pressure Bell released the ball to the deep back corner of the end zone where eyes followed its trajectory to Lansing's Luke Winslow who was just clear of his defender and the pass fell perfectly into Winslows hands for the tying TD. The team and fans went wild.

Now for the forementioned "one more play". The injured Nelson was on the sideline bench and hobbled onto the field bad knee and all. He managed his season long duty to successfully hold for Bell's PAT kick that made it easily through the northern uprights and a 15-14 lead with 3.6 seconds yet remaining on the game clock.

One thing about 8-man football is that kickoffs provide a lot of open field to run and big plays are common occurrences. Coach Hotchkiss opted for a short kickoff along the home sideline and outside contain man Ben Vincent made something to "show for it" this time with the huge game sealing recovery.

Lansing heads to Newfield for its first Saturday game of the season for a Noon Kick Off.

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