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Last minute touchdown gives London Pirates GOTW win over H.M. King

Posted at 3:56 PM, Sep 15, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-15 16:57:17-04

KINGSVILLE, Texas — London Pirates Football Team (3-1) had to fight through a stiff H.M. King (2-2) defense to steal a 17-13 victory on the road.

The game was played Thursday at Javelina Stadium on the campus of Texas A&M University-Kingsville.

The Pirates came out firing, looking to take an early lead with their air attack through quarterback Alexander Manning. However, his first shot at the end zone was intercepted by Brahma's Christian Flowers near the goal line.

The Brahma's offense was the opposite, coming out a bit slow to start. Their drive stalled, punting the ball right back to London who took advantage of the good field position.

They move down the field for a short range pass from Manning to Connor LeBleu in the flat. He walked in, unguarded, for a touchdown, giving London an early 7-0 lead.

It appeared London's offense would start rolling, but quite the opposite. The Brahma's defense woke up to to force short drives and punts.

Into the second quarter, Brahma's offense got something going.

Junior quarterback Dylon Everett sent the ball 35 yards through the air to his receiver Donavan Bencze. The senior receiver did well to track the ball and contort his body back towards his quarterback as he caught the ball and fell backwards into the end zone.

The game was tied at 7, but not for long.

A steady drive by London working more on their ground game got the Pirates deep into Brahma territory. They settled for a 27 yard field goal by senior Jay Prebula.

Pirates took the lead into half 10-7. It was King that came out of the break with more motivation.

It started on defense for King. Jacob Cantu swatted away a third down pass that was sure to result in a first down if completed.

Brahmas were pinned deep on their side of the field facing third and long. It appeared they weren't going to get the first down until a flag came out for a late hit out of bounds that saved their drive.

The Brahma offense was then clicking the best it had all game.

Everett finally broke free running the ball for a 17 yard pick up. After a penalty, Everett moved them right back up with a big toss to Jasiah Rivera. A 38 yard pick up. Again, moved back by another penalty, it put the Brahmas on the 35 yard line in Pirate territory. That's where the Everett and Bencze connection thrives. The combo connect again for a 35 yard passing touchdown in stride.

King got their first lead, but missed the extra point making it 13-10.

As London drove down to take the lead back, Pirates Andrew Rendon was tackled by several defenders, getting stripped of the ball in the process, in the red zone.

However, defense set in for both teams. Pirates and Brahmas struggled to get big chunk plays running the ball and the passing game stalled for both sides.

In the fourth quarter, it was penalties that really hurt the Brahmas, putting a stop to several drives.

With about five minutes left in the game, London got the ball back. They had stopped taking long shots and kept the ball on the ground. Israel Leal took a bulk of the carries on that drive picking up first down after first down.

When the Pirates returned to the air, it was a short pass to Leal who made an excellent one handed catch gong towards the sideline before being knocked down with force. Unfortunately for the Brahamas they were flagged for a hit to head. So, an extra 15 yards was picked up setting the Pirates up for agood look at the end zone.

With 47 seconds left, Manning handed off the ball to Leal who ran left and bowled into the end zone for a touchdown.

That's how this game would end, the Pirates stealing the late win 17-13.

London, who played three of their first four games on Thursday, return to a Friday only schedule beginning next week at Aransas Pass (0-3).

In Week five, King will begin a tough district schedule at undefeated Tuloso-Midway (4-0) on Friday.

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