Unbeaten River Hill edges Mt. Hebron

Hawks come back, 19-17, on 4th-quarter field goal


High Schools

October 30, 2004|By Rick Belz | Rick Belz,SUN STAFF

When Ryan Deiter lined up for a 39-yard field-goal attempt with six minutes to go, he knew it was probably his game to win or lose.

His team trailed by one - because of an extra-point attempt that he had missed with 33 seconds left in the third quarter.

He remembered that a year ago, Mount Hebron defeated River Hill on a last-second field goal.

But he didn't allow the pressure to get the best of him.

The kick from the left hash mark was perfect, and River Hill won, 19-17, to clinch at least a share of the county title and a Class 3A state playoff berth.

"I knew it would have been my fault if we lost," Deiter said. "We had worked real hard to get that touchdown and it was a big letdown. But we didn't get down. No one gets on each other when we mess up. We're a real close team and the coaches had nothing but faith in me. This gives us the inspiration that no matter what, we can come back and win."

It was the second straight week that River Hill (9-0 overall, 8-0 league) defeated an unbeaten team, downing Long Reach a week ago.

"This was the greatest win for our program," said River Hill coach Brian Van Deusen. "We've never been 9-0 before. They're a great team and changed their defensive looks in the first half and we didn't make adjustments until halftime. We've been a second-half team all year. All that summer weightlifting pays off. There was so much on the line tonight."

Tyler Martin rushed 21 times for 123 yards and one touchdown and caught a 22-yard touchdown pass for River Hill.

Hawks quarterback Ben Hostetler completed 10 of 20 passes for 159 yards and one touchdown. He also intercepted his 10th pass of the season early in the fourth quarter, which led to a 14-play drive that ended with Deiter's winning field goal.

"Their linebackers were a little faster on the corners than we thought," said Vikings coach Larry Luthe. "We thought we'd be able to get outside on them but couldn't. And there was a momentum shift in the third quarter when they held us twice on three and out."

Hebron (8-1, 7-1) actually started that quarter with a bang when Chris Eccleston ran 60 yards on the second play for a touchdown.

But River Hill's defense stiffened and its offense later launched a five-play, 61-yard scoring drive to score on Martin's 8-yard run with 33 seconds left in that quarter.

The Hawks also scored with 4:12 left in the third quarter after a 58-yard, four-play drive that ended with Martin catching a 22-yard touchdown pass. River Hill outscored Hebron 13-7 in the third quarter.

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