KENTLAND | Boone Grove will quickly have to shake off a disappointing Friday night 34-28 loss to South Newton.
A win looked within Boone Grove's grasp before a wild finish ended in its second-straight loss, this time in Kentland.
The Wolves (6-3) had the ball and a 21-19 lead with 2:27 left in the game against host South Newton.
“It hurts being up two points at the end of the game, and then they pull off two touchdowns,” Boone Grove quarterback Dean Hill said.
Hill threw a deep ball toward the end zone from his own 40 that was picked off by South Newton Austin Drinski, who took it 99 yards to the house.
“It was poor execution on our part, and they hung in there and did what they had to do,” Boone Grove Coach Tony Tinkel said. “Again we didn’t tackle. We’ve had games where we just don’t tackle people, and that happened again tonight.”
Drinski’s pick-six put the Rebels up 27-21 after a two-point conversion with 2:13 left.
“Jay (Sawa) ran a good route,” Hill said. “He was open, and I overthrew him a little bit. (Drinski) made a play. .. I probably should’ve just took off and ran for a couple yards and got down safe and took some time off the clock.”
After Boone Grove turned the ball over on downs, Drinski added a 47-yard TD jaunt before the Wolves countered one last time with a Hill to Jacob Clapp TD pass.
“Our kids do a great job, and they don’t give up,” Tinkel said. “We’re down 14, and they go down and score. They’ve worked hard all year.”
The Wolves will look to regroup for the sectional opener at Lake Station.
“We’re not going to take them for granted,” Hill said. “We just lost back-to-back games, and we can’t take anyone for granted at this point.”
With his team trailing 7-0 in the first half, Hill engineered a drive from his own 40-yard line, culminating in a 17-yard scoring strike to Clapp. Hill connected with Jason Sawa on the conversion pass for an 8-7 lead with 8:13 left in the second quarter.
After South Newton’s John Dafcik sprinted 69 yards for a touchdown and a 13-8 lead, Boone Grove answered again.
Evan Stewart finished an eight-play drive with a five-yard run to put the Wolves back on top at 14-13 with 4:13 left in the second quarter.
Drinski finished with 129 yards rushing and 127 passing.
“He’s a hoss,” Hill said. “He ran it. He threw it. He’s pretty good.”