In a tightly officiated game that turned ugly at the end, Phoenix Arcadia prevailed over host Gilbert Higley 14-7 in a Division III football game.
Arcadia’s Steven Moala scored Arcadia’s two touchdowns to lead a come-from-behind effort.
“After losing three in a row, we wanted to go out on a happy note,” Moala said. “The line really did the job for us opening up holes for me.”
Higley (4-6) took the lead early scoring on the second play of the game. Thomas Bush broke free on a 44-yard run to put Higley on top 7-0 after Mythias Young’s kick with one minute gone in the first period.
Moala scored the first of his two touchdowns on a 1-yard run, making the score 7-6 when Higley’s Byron Bourgogne blocked Ofa Maafu’s kick with 5:18 left in the second period.
Moala then scored on a 40-yard pass play from quarterback Pete Campbell. Moala’s conversion run gave Arcadia a 14-7 lead that proved to be the game winner with 38 seconds to go in the second quarter.
Higley came right back and moved to the Arcadia 1-yard line, but Arcadia’s defense held Higley from scoring as time ran out in the second quarter.
Then the game got messy and ugly.
Altogether there were five Higley fumbles, losing one of those, and two interceptions. Arcadia lost one fumble and was intercepted once.
Higley Coach Eddy Zubey was called for unsportsmanlike conduct and then thrown out of the game with 11:02 to go in the fourth quarter.
It got even uglier when Arcadia was called for unsportsmanlike conduct for a helmet-to-helmet hit late in the game. That led to an unsportsmanlike conduct call on Arcadia’s coach, Lenny Abt.
After that the officials called for Higley Athletic Director Dwayne Folsom to come out and talk to his coaches.
“He (Zubey) will have to sit out the first game next season as a result of his ejection,” Folsom said. “We will follow the protocol of the AIA in this situation. The administration likely will do nothing further.”