HOBART | Things looked bleak for the home team at halftime Saturday at the Brickyard, where Hobart trailed upstart LaPorte 14-7.
Senior Noah Smith looked around the locker room and delivered a message.
"Don't even think about losing. We don't accept it," Smith said.
In the end, Times No. 6 Hobart didn't, rallying from 14 down to escape the Slicers 27-21 in overtime, where Smith's 2-yard touchdown scamper won it.
"It just opened up. Linemen, linemen, linemen. Anybody could've ran through that," Smith said. "I wish we would've gotten it done earlier, so it was bittersweet."
The run was set up by Zach Satterfield's fumble recovery at the 1-yard line on LaPorte's series.
"That's a sign of a team coming together. We had our backs against the wall," coach Ryan Turley said. "We were lucky to get back into the game."
The Slicers scored quick on their first possession; an 81-yard, two-play, 20-second drive that culminated in a 7-yard Salary touchdown run. That run was set up by a 74-yard pass from Eric Mazany to a wide-open Brian McGuire down the left sideline.
The Brickies (2-0) scored on a 4-yard Satterfield run with three minutes to go in the first half, but the Slicers got that right back with a 69-yard touchdown pass from Mazany to Tyler Littlejohn.
Littlejohn evaded at least one Hobart defensive back on a long run after the catch and carried two Brickies into the end zone with him. LaPorte led 14-7 at the break.
"Not for a second, (did I doubt that we could win)," Smith said. "But it needs to be even better. We can't put ourselves in that situation."
LaPorte (1-1) opened up the second half exactly like it wanted. Salary carried the ball six times on the drive, the last time for a second 7-yard touchdown to extend the lead to 21-7.
Hobart's drive was stalling in the third quarter when Andrew Barras hit Nick Bokun with a pretty, over-the-shoulder pass for a 26-yard touchdown on fourth down. Barras found Bokun again in the fourth quarter to send the game into overtime.
"They've been leaders in our program for a couple years now," Turley said. "That's what we need, seniors to step up in moments like this."