SIMPSONVILLE Bottled up all game long, Southside Christian struck for two touchdowns when it needed them most Friday night.
Clayton Coulter fired a strike to Quintyn Reeder for a 10-yard touchdown in overtime to give the Sabres a 16-13 victory over visiting Christ Church in their Region 2-A showdown.
“I’ve got to give Clayton credit,” SCS coach Jason Kaiser said. “He rifled that thing right in the hole. Quintyn caught it. Game over.”
The win gives Southside Christian (6-1, 1-0), No. 10 in Class A, its first victory over the rival Cavaliers, as well as a leg up in the region race.
Third-ranked Christ Church, which earlier this season lost for the first time since 2011, dropped to 5-2 overall and 1-1 in the region.
The Cavaliers had the ball first in overtime, but after two incomplete passes and a run that lost 2 yards, they settled for Julian Mina’s 20-yard field goal.
After Southside Christian took possession, Coulter threw an incomplete pass on first down. But on second down, he stepped back into the pocket and threw to an open Reeder, who pulled in the ball, went to the ground with it and then rose to his feet to begin the celebration.
“You go into overtime,” Kaiser said, “and it’s like, ‘We’re playing with house money right now. Let’s have some fun.’ Before it happened, I told them, ‘Let’s do this. Let’s make them kick the field goal, let’s score and let’s go home,’ and they’re like, ‘All right,’ and that’s exactly what they did.”
The Sabres didn’t score their first touchdown until late in what had been a defensive struggle all night.
Southside Christian, trailing 10-3, began from its 44-yard line with 3:51 remaining. On first down, Coulter hit Connor Holden for 39 yards, taking the ball to the Christ Church 17-yard line.
After an incomplete pass, Coulter scrambled his way to the end zone.
“Sometimes I get crazy when he just adlibs and starts running,” Kaiser said, “but sometimes he’s got to because they’re good and they bring a lot of pressure.”
John Kissenberth’s point-after kick tied the score at 10-10.
Christ Church had a late attempt to win in regulation. Roscoe Cox made a fair catch on a punt at the Southside Christian 47-yard line with 17 seconds left, and Mina attempted a free-kick field goal, but the kick came up short.
Southside Christian took a 3-0 lead in the second quarter on a 20-yard field goal by Kissenberth.
Christ Church tied the score on the last play of the first half when Mina nailed a field goal from 47 yards.
The Cavaliers began the second half with a five-play 56-yard drive. Radford Swent scored on a 13-yard run, and Christ Church led 10-3.
The Sabres’ defense stood tall the rest of the half, and the offense had just enough time to make the overtime necessary.
Next week, Christ Church will try to bounce back at Ware Shoals. Southside Christian will have another challenge when it travels to Whitmire.
“We can’t have a lull after this win,” Kaiser said. “I know it’s a big win, and I want them to enjoy it, but we’ve got some work to do. We’ve got to get better next week.”