SOUTHEASTERN NORTH CAROLINA (WECT) - Faced with a similar situation they found themselves in 2016, the Hoggard Vikings couldn't overcome a talented Scotland Fighting Scots team and lost in the semifinals of the 4A state football playoffs.
"To win a game like this you have to win in all four quarters and we didn't do that," Vikings head coach Craig Underwood said.
The Vikings struggled on offense in the first half, including two costly turnovers deep in Scots territory. Scotland scored twice off the turnovers and lead 32-7 in the fourth quarter.
"We said it's a long shot but if nothing else we are guaranteed two more quarters of playing football together," Underwood said.
Hoggard rattled off 25 unanswered points, fueled by three Josh Jones' touchdown passes to Chris Toudle. "Our offense just came alive and the momentum, what an exciting half of football," Underwood explained.
Heading into overtime and the game knotted up at 39-39, Hoggard lost the coin toss and started on offense. Jones found Anthony Schiavone in the end zone and the Vikings kicked the extra point to take the lead.
But Scotland answered with a touchdown of their own and quarterback Warren Bell ran in the two point conversion to give the Fighting Scots a 47-46 victory.
"When you lose the toss and you have to go first you kick the extra point," Underwood said. "When you get to go second you go for two I would have done the same thing."
Hoggard finished the season 13-1 and two wins away from a state championship berth. Underwood told his team in the huddle post game he couldn't be prouder to coach the team and this special group of seniors.
"I hate that we did not come out victorious but the way our guys continue to fight says who this team is. A team full of grit and full of passion and love for the game, wish we could have gotten one more."