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NHS football falls to George Washington in double overtime, 34-33

The Niwot High School football team played the George Washington High School Patriots Thursday, Oct. 12, losing in a close, one-point game that ended in heartbreak. Niwot lost 34-33, dropping the team to a 3-4 record. The Cougars had a staggering 393 yards on the ground, more than the Patriots' 288 total yards for the game but were plagued by their five turnovers.

Niwot started the game on offense, but on the first play of the drive, quarterback Chad Volf's pass was intercepted. Niwot's defense was quick to bounce back as they were able to force a turnover on downs after forcing three incomplete passes.

The Cougars started their next drive with a bang as Jesus Rosas and Hayden Shaw broke off two runs that combined for 41 yards putting Niwot in the red zone. Rosas then took a carry down to the one-yard line before Niwot was eventually held, settling for a field goal attempt that flew just left of the post. The Patriot's next drive was slow, prolonged by third down plays that were barely converted, until Gavin Burrage and Shaw combined for a sack on third down, forcing a punt.

The Cougar offense stuttered as two rushes resulted in only three yards, and on third down, Volf was sacked to end the quarter, forcing a Niwot punt. The Patriots returned the punt to the 30, where they were able to open up the passing game and score the first points of the game, going up 7-0.

Niwot was quick to answer as Volf was able to break a 20-yard run to open the drive. Niwot continued to march down the field before a fumble ended the threat. The Cougar defense didn't let George Washington generate much offense, eventually stalling them out in the red zone.

Niwot had just three minutes left in the half when their drive started, but quickly got things going with a 40-yard run by Volf. The Cougars didn't waste time when after a 20-yard pass to Mats Lehan, Rosas was set up with a touchdown run, tying the game 7-7 after Paris Lee's PAT.

Niwot started the second half on defense, where after a couple of plays, the Cougars were able to strip the ball from the running back and recover the fumble. Niwot was quick to take advantage of the play as Volf kept the ball on the option, running 70 yards for a touchdown, putting Niwot up by seven after Lee's PAT.

George Washington answered Niwot quickly, and after a long pass put the Patriots in Cougar territory, and were able to run the ball in to take the lead, 15-14, after a successful two-point conversion. Niwot wasn't able to answer because on the third play of the next drive, the Cougars lost possession on a fumble.

Niwot forced George Washington into several third-down conversions, but they scored on a 20-yard touchdown at the start of the fourth quarter, going up 21-14 after an unsuccessful two-point conversion. Niwot was able to drive down the field off of rushes from Shaw, Rosas, and Volf before they eventually fumbled the ball in the Patriots red zone, giving George Washington the ball back.

Niwot's defense stepped up, and after a couple back and forth plays, Lehan was able to make a diving catch, giving the Cougars great field position. Niwot didn't waste any time tying the game, as they took two plays to get Rosas an open hole to run 29 yards for a game-tying touchdown after Lee's PAT.

Neither team was able to move the ball before time in regulation ran out.

George Washington started with the ball in overtime, scoring after just three plays, but failing on the two-point conversion gave them a lead of 27-21. Niwot's first attempt in overtime was a success as it just took one play for Volf to end up in the end zone. Niwot wasn't able to seal their win with a PAT as it was blocked, keeping the game tied 27-27.

Niwot got another attempt right away, and didn't waste time as Rosas carried the ball in for his third touchdown of the night to give Niwot a 33-27 lead after another missed PAT. George Washington took advantage of the situation, scoring and knocking down their own PAT to win the game 34-33 in double overtime.


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