|LONGVIEW - One thing you can say about Longview's Lobo, they'll find some way to make the game exciting.
In the first three games, the Lobos came out of the chute slow and then burst out in the second half. Friday night against Galveston Ball, the Lobos ran out to a 17-0 halftime lead and then hung on desperately for a 17-13 non-district triumph, and their 17th consecutive win at home.
Jim Tutt culminated a 56-yard drive on Longview's first possession of the game with a career-long 40-yard field goal with 4:36 showing in the first period to lift the hosts to an early 3-0 lead.
On its next possession, Longview drove to the Ball six, only to run out of downs.
Greg Brown gave the ball right back to the offense, however, just five plays later when he intercepted a stray aerial and returned it 34 yards to the Tornado 12.
Two plays later, Dinky Edwards, who rushed for 116 yards, burst in from the four. Tutt added the extra point for a 10-0 advantage.
Then, on their next possession, the Green Machine took the ball and moved 57 yards in 10 plays, with Kenny Jackson hitting Brown with a 21-yard pass for the clincher. Tutt again added the extra point, and with 2:14 remaining in the first half, it appeared the Lobos were on their way to a rout.
Fullback Bobby Portley broke 80 yards for a touchdown on Longview's second possession, only to see it called back for holding.
Then Ball made its move. Quarterback Lance Courville combined with his brother Vincent on a slant-in pattern that covered 75 yards for the Tors' first touchdown with 41 seconds remaining in the third stanza. The extra point made it 17-7.
Longview took the kickoff and drove to the Ball one-yard line. A penalty and a fumble gave the Tors the ball back at the eight.
A mammoth 92-yard, 15-play scoring drive, began at that point for the visitors. The big play of the drive, and the game, was a 24-yard scamper by Dewayne Curtis when he went back to punt at the Tor 24 and the snap was low and he had to run.
It was destined for Ball to score on that drive. Facing a second-and-goal situation at the Lobo one, the Mean Green's only chance of preventing the touchdown was to produce a fumble. Moody Hatcher took the handoff and dove into the right side of the line where he was blasted by a host of Lobo defenders. The ball popped out, but Ball's Raphael Moore fell on the pigskin for the touchdown.
It wasn't over yet. Ball got the ball at it's own 22 with 50 seconds left. The Tors made it to the Lobo 43 where clay Meyers sacked Courville with a 12-yard loss on the last play of the game to insure the win.
It was Longview's fourth win of the year in as many outings while Ball fell to 2-1. Longview will open District 14-AAAA play next week by hosting Nacogdoches.