MORGAN — On the last play of Friday night’s game, with Morgan clinging to a seven-point lead, South Summit quarterback Caden Christenson heaved the football toward the end zone. After two tips into the air, Morgan’s Kade Carrigan finally came down with an interception that clinched the Trojans’ first win of the season and allowed coach Kovi Christiansen to breathe a huge sigh of relief.
“I’m exhausted,” Christiansen said. “I feel like I played in the game.”
The Trojans, who trailed 7-0 at halftime and looked nothing like themselves offensively, went back to the ground game and exploded for 28 points in the third quarter to capture the lead and hold on for a 34-27 victory.
Morgan’s first drive of the third quarter was an 11-play, 51-yard thing of beauty — every play on the ground.
“I stopped listening to everyone else tell us what we should run and went back to what our kids believe in,” Christiansen said. “We’ve got to do some other things besides just being under center, but our kids believe in our system. They wanted to drive the ball down their throats.”
Kade Carrigan rushed the ball 17 times for 89 yards and a pair of touchdowns, while Joe Kippen added 67 yards on the ground, including an electrifying 50-yard sprint down the Morgan sideline to give the Trojans a 28-14 lead.
But the Wildcats sure made it interesting. Behind the running of Christenson and Porter Santos, South Summit responded with two straight touchdowns, including a 4-yard scoring run by Christensen with 6:18 to play.
The Wildcats decided to take advantage of the momentum they had and went for a risky two-point conversion that would have given them a 29-28 lead.
Instead, Morgan’s Ben Saunders stepped in front of Christenson’s pass for an interception.
“Ben’s a great athlete, so we threw him out there at corner and he made one of the biggest plays of the night,” Christiansen said. “That was huge.”
Carrigan’s three-yard TD run with 39 seconds left to play gave Morgan a cushion that South Summit wasn’t quite able to overcome.
“I don’t know of another team in 2-A that can even compare to those guys,” Christiansen said of the Wildcats. “They were awesome.”
For two quarters, the Trojans weren’t bad themselves.