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Titans work OT to down CMA, 21-20

Posted: October 16, 2012 1:17 p.m.
Updated: October 17, 2012 5:00 a.m.
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CODY OWENS HAD ONE of two interceptions for CMA in Saturday’s loss to the Raleigh Titans.

Having already missed the mark on one extra point kick attempt, Camden Military Academy head coach Will Rice went for the win rather than to try and extend Saturday’s game with the Raleigh Titans to another set of downs.
It was the Titans, however, who snuffed out the Spartans’ two-point try in overtime to preserve a 21-20 victory, which ruined homecoming at CMA.
The loss dropped the hosts to 0-6 on the season, but the decision to go for the victory rather than go to a second round of 10-yard series was not an option for the hosts.
“We missed out first extra point try and I wasn’t confident with it,” Rice said, “so, we went for the win.’
Trailing, 21-20, after the visitors drove 10 yards for the touchdown while getting the PAT kick after the first possession in overtime, CMA went to work with Tim Coleman under center in what was a revolving door method at quarterback for the hosts.
The 6-foot-1 Coleman called his own number and scored on a keeper to draw the Spartans to within one, at 21-20. Rice never hesitated in going for the victory. But the Titans stuffed the two-point run attempt to leave with their third win in seven starts.
Coleman, who had been a wide out and running back for CMA, shared the signal-calling duties with Ricky Thornley, who had started CMA’s first five games. Rice said inserting Coleman at quarterback gave the Titans two different players to defend against.
The decision to play two quarterbacks was something the CMA staff discussed prior to the previous week’s bye.
“This was something that, as a coaching staff, we had talked about doing before we had fall break. We implemented it when we got back (last) week,” Rice said.
“Both guys (Thornley and Coleman) played and neither of them looked bad, at all. They are two different players and each of them does good things and helps us with things they excel in doing.”
Rice said, in the end, Coleman had the hot hand and was in the game, calling signals, at the end.
“Tim got hot late in the game and we stayed with him at quarterback,” Rice said of Coleman.
After a scoreless first quarter, the Titans hit the scoreboard in the second quarter with a 50-yard scoring pass to carry a 7-0 lead into the locker room at intermission.
CMA was able to shut down the visitors’ passing game after that with Cody Owens and Greg DeKanski each picking off a Titan aerial. Offensively, Raleigh was able to take away the CMA passing game and was able to stack up the line of scrimmage, turning the Spartans away on two occasions after the hosts drove inside the Raleigh red zone.
“We kind of shot ourself in the foot a couple of times when we didn’t execute after we got into the red zone,” Rice said.
With Coleman at quarterback, the Spartans scored their first touchdown in the fourth quarter as Coleman called his own number and went in from 12 yards out to cut the lead to 7-6. The PAT kick missed the mark as the hosts trailed by one.
Following a Titans’ score, which made it 14-6, CMA received a long kickoff return from Ryan Collins which set the Spartans up at midfield, late in the game. Staying on the ground, CMA received a five-yard scoring run from Ange Gadji to close to within 14-12. Coleman then ran in the two-point conversion to knot things at 14-14, which helped send the game into overtime.
Raleigh got the ball first and scored on its possession and got the kick before the hosts used Coleman’s keeper to make it 21-20.
Rice said his defensive unit struggled, at times, against a solid Titans’ offensive front. The Spartans die recover a pair of Raleigh fumbles with John Landstreet pouncing on one while Coleman recovered a Titan fumble in the end zone, preventing what could have been the winning score in regulation.
Rice said the bye week did not help his team.
“We played well, at times, on defense,” Rice said, “but we had a hard time stopping the run. They had some big guys on their line and we didn’t do a good job against them. We didn’t tackle very well.
“(The week off) always hurts you in some way, shape or form, which it did to us in this game.”
Rice said there were some positives which came out of this game for the Spartans, who travel to meet McBee on Friday night.
“It would have been easy for our guys to have given up after we were down at halftime,” Rice said. “I told them after the game that they ought to be proud of themselves for the effort they put in.”

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