FLOWER MOUND – A defensive struggle through three quarters, Marcus and Coppell turned on the fireworks in the fourth quarter and a pair of overtimes.
Coppell quarterback Jack Fishpaw’s would-be game-tying pass was picked off on a two-point try in the second overtime, and Marcus held on for a thrilling 39-37 win on Friday at Marauder Stadium.
Tied 24-24, Coppell head coach Mike DeWitt called a quarterback sneak on fourth down in overtime from the 5-yard line. Senior Landry Fee snuck for a first down, and the Cowboys scored on the next play to take a 31-24 lead.
Marcus answered with its own touchdown on its offensive possession, tying the game at 31 with a Waker Wells touchdown run from the 1-yard line.
Marcus got the ball to start the second overtime and scored a touchdown on a 9-yard run by Gabe Espinoza. Then, on the mandated two-point conversion attempt, Connor Vaughn caught a tipped pass for the successful conversion and a 39-31 lead.
Coppell’s Dylan Nelson scored a touchdown to answer, but a false start penalty pushed the Cowboys back to the 8-yard line for its two point attempt. That’s when Fishpaws pass was intercepted by Chance Sautter.
“That was such a big win for us,” said Kevin Atkinson, Marcus head coach. “They beat us by one point in 2018 to keep us out of the playoffs, and I still think about that.”
“I thought it was a great effort, we just came up short,” said Mike DeWitt, Coppell head coach. “Nothing to be ashamed about.”
Marcus quarterback Cole Welliver hit Ashton Cozart in stride for a 65-yard touchdown pass and a 24-17 lead with 3:34 remaining in the fourth quarter. But Coppell quickly answered, with Fishpaw finding Charlie Barker for a 76-yard touchdown pass on the ensuing drive to tie the game with 2:28 remaining.
Earlier in the quarter, Cozart caught a 35-yard touchdown pass from Jaxxon Warren to give Marcus a 17-14 lead, but Coppell kicker Nicolas Radicic tied the game with a 37-yard field goal with five minutes remaining.
Both teams were quiet offensively through three quarters. At halftime, Coppell led 14-10 and neither team scored in the third quarter.
Welliver split snaps all evening with Warren. The duo combined for 272 yards passing. Wells carried the Marauders on the ground, finishing with 91 rushing yards and two touchdowns. Espinoza added 111 yards on the ground.
Fishpaw ran for the game's opening touchdown and threw for another score midway through the second quarter.
A call by the referees as the first half kept Wells from another score – and enraged the Marcus sidelines.
Trailing 14-10, Welliver drove the Marauders to the Coppell 1-yard line. With seven seconds left, and with a timeout in his pocket, Atkinson called a run play while the clock ticked down. Wells, the ball carrier, was stood up at the goal line, but his offensive line mates appeared to push Wells over the line for a score.
The line judge, though, called Wells down on the 6-inch line, and the clock expired for halftime.