0:01 or 0:00? Eagles playoffs dimmed

By Randy Lefko Sports Editor
Posted 10/26/22

FLEMING ISLAND - Fleming Island High football took a punch in the stomach shot on Friday night in a finish that will be argued for the next 20 years in the folklore of Clay County football.

But, …

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0:01 or 0:00? Eagles playoffs dimmed

Posted

FLEMING ISLAND - Fleming Island High football took a punch in the stomach shot on Friday night in a finish that will be argued for the next 20 years in the folklore of Clay County football.

But, first, the scenario for playoffs sits precariously in the lap of the Golden Eagles’ Thursday district matchup with Buchholz High in Gainesville.

“Just like last year, we have to win out and pray for some luck to get to the playoffs,” said Fleming Island coach Damenyum Springs, who made the eighth seed into the region playoffs last year with five wins in the final six games. “We had some tears in the locker room after this, but we have to regroup and get ready quickly for Buchholz on Thursday.”

In the thrilling final moments of the Fleming Island homecoming clash with Creekside High, Fleming Island got a scamper from quarterback Cibastian Broughton with 13 seconds on the clock to near midfield. Broughton rolled right and escaped a sack chase, threw at 0:06 to wide receiver Darion Domenick near the 15 yard line and on top of the hashmark with 0:02 on the clock. Domenick was unable to get to the sideline, according to officials, in time to stop the clock before time ran out to end the game with Creekside winning 38-35. The win was Creekside second buzzer beater after a 49-48 win over Oakleaf two weeks ago that was decided with just eight seconds on the clock.

Creekside opened the scoring in the first quarter with a 23 yard field goal to go up 3-0 with four minutes in the first quarter.

Later in the first, Fleming Island downed a punt at the Creekside 12 yard line with 12 seconds left in the quarter.

Both teams traded punts into the second quarter still with Creekside up just 3-0. Fleming Island had one scoring opportunity but tight end Dakota Rowe mishandled a quick pass over the middle near the Creekside 20 yard line.

On the exchange on downs, Fleming Island got a break with defensive back Kaylib Singleton making a diving interception at the Creekside 40 yard line.

After the interception, running back Tay’shaun Smith zigzagged into the end zone to put Fleming Island on the scoreboard up 6-3 with 4:25 in the half. Sam Singleton pounded in for a two point conversion to put Fleming Island up 8-3.

Creekside kick returnman Andrew Kelley took the ensuing kickoff to midfield to start the Knights before running back Nick Williams walked into the end zone after a slant pass to wideout Brendon McMillan to the 15 to put the Knights up 10-8 with just one minute off the clock.

Just before the halftime break, on fourth down at the Creekside 19, Broughton hit Singleton with a short out pass that Singleton barreled into the end zone to apparently give Fleming Island a 15-10 lead into the lockers.

With 14 seconds to go though, Creekside wanted more after a pass of 40 yards to the Fleming Island 21 with Creekside quarterback Wilson Edwards finding McMillan in the back of the end zone for a score, 17-15.

After halftime, Fleming Island started at their own 12 and moved quickly into Creekside territory with Broughton sprinting nearly 50 yards to paydirt but a penalty flag brought the effort back to the 48. Broughton regrouped after his sprint and found wide receiver Darion Domenick for a 20 yard back of the end zone score to 21-17.

With 6:07 left in third, with Creekside hitting a field goal to go to 21-20, Fleming Island was force to punt and put Creekside at midfield.

Williams continued to pound the Fleming Island defense with a run to the 20, then to the 10, then into the end zone with 1:50 left in the third to go up 26-21; 28-21 with a two-pointer. Creekside got one more field to go to 31-21 as the fourth quarter.

Singleton got Fleming Island to 31-27 off another pass with Creekside starting at their own 33 with 4:37 left in the game. A pass deflection by Abram Wright fell into Devante Lewis hands to give Fleming Island field position at Creekside’s 30 with four minutes left in the game.

Singleton dragged a tackler to the 13 before blasting straight up the middle to paydirt to put make the game 33-31 with 3:12 with Fleming Island going for two points. Singleton for a third time got pushed by his offensive line to give Fleming Island a 35-31 lead with 3:12 to go.

Edwards, who orchestrated a last minute comeback win over Oakleaf two weeks ago, hit one pass over the middle for 55 yards to Ashton Reynolds, then hit Hampton Riedl at the 19.

A late hit flag gave Creekside a closer shot at a touchdown that put a fourth and 14 with 21 seconds in front of the Golden Eagle defense. Edwards found Riedl in the end zone with a pass with 33 seconds to go; 38-35.

Singleton nearly broke the ensuing kickoff but got ankled at midfield to set up the last minute theatrics.

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