|LONGVIEW - The streak is alive and well and for that matter so are the Longview Lobos.
Longview needed a victory to remain in contention for a postseason bid and in the process continued Marshall's misery for the 19th straight time with a 34-22 win Friday at sold-out Lobo Stadium.
With the win, Longview ties the Mavericks - ranked No. 10 in the Associated Press Schoolboy poll - for first place in District 13-5A. In addition, the Lobos also got a gift from Tyler Lee, with a 24-7 win over Tyler Lee.
The Red Raiders victory moves them into a tie with both Longview and Marshall. An earlier 10-3 loss by Tyler Lee to the Lobos, gives the edge to Longview in head-to-head competition. Marshall and Tyler Lee face off next Friday.
"We did it for Brian Dodson," said tailback Earnest Hunter, a Lobo split end who died earlier this season in a car wreck.
The Lobos needed all they could muster to hold off Marshall and junior sensations Benny Valentine and Odell Beckham. Valentine was an incredible 13 of 29 for 202 yards passing and one touchdown, while Beckham ground out 122 yards on 15 carries.
Longview countered effectively with sophomore Hunter, who garnered 130 yards on 25 attempts and scored once. It was his second 100 yard game of the season after blistering Texas High earlier in the season for 163.
Two length drives in the second half enabled the Lobos to chew up valuable time and secure the win.
Hunter's 7-yard gallop with 7:33 did prove to be the capper.
Starting at their won 33, a mixture of of Hunter and short keepers from quarterback Mike Bobo, the Lobos drove 67 yards in 12 plays.
Just two series earlier, Longview took advantage of a short punt by Marshall and pounded out 47 yards in 13 plays eating up nearly six minutes off the clock.
Bobo's 1-yard plunge lifted Longview to a 27-16 advantage with 3:48 to play in the third quarter.
The Mavericks did put pressure on the Lobos when Valentine found David Brooks in the end zone for a 9-yard strike with 34 seconds remaining in the third quarter, drawing them back to within five points.
"I thought we played hard. Really player well, too," noted an excited Lobo coach Doug Cox. "I thought we played as a team. We played well both ways (offensive and defense) times before. I think this time we developed a real closeness.
"I thought going in at the half (ahead 20-16) we were still in trouble. We were still two points below what we had to have at that time and we thought we had to win by six. I really felt like if we could keep the football we would be in good shape and really come off it," Cox added.
Valentine and Hunter were the respective standouts in the opening half, as the Lobos held a slim 20-16 lead at halftime.
Valentine sacked the Mavericks offense connecting with on eight of 18 for 119 yards, with Brooks on the receiving end for 79 yards.
For Longview, Hunter was on track with his second 100 yard game of the season. He headed into the dressing room with 84 yards on 14 carries.
Marshall struck first before the standing room only crowd of 10,500 spectators taking the opening drive to the Lobos' 15 before Brian Trudnak knocked home a 32-yard field goal.
It took Longview until its second possession to light up the scoreboard on a 3-yard burst by Ray Allison - his 10th rushing touchdown of the season. Steve all good's extra point put the Lobos on top 7-3.
Marshall, however, opened the second quarter with two scores within a four-minute sequence.
Beckham finished a 69-yard, 8-play drive with a 2-yard run. An interception by Alfred Jackson with 9:16 to play before the half, gave the Mavericks the ball back at their own 27. Brooks and Beckham paved the way for Beckham's second score of the game on a 1-yard drive.
Longview, however, began to take the momentum from the Mavericks on its next series.
A 1-yard sneak by Bobo for the first of three touchdowns on the game, got the Lobos going with 3:52 left in the second quarter. A Pitch by Valentine, who was hit after releasing it went awry of Beckham and into the hands of Warren Smith who fell on it at the Mavericks' 12.
Two plays later, Bobo broke the plane of the end zone for six points, and following Allgood's extra point, Longview jumped to a 20-16 lead.