Bubba Johnson rushed 25 times for 143 yards, but none more important than his four-yard carry with just two minutes remaining to give Page (5-1, 2-0 Region 5-5A) a 21-14 lead en route to a 24-14 Region 5-5A victory over Summit (6-1, 1-1).
“It was just about who wanted it more,” said Johnson as he and the Spartans’ Keaten Wade put on a show of wills for four quarters, including Wade’s 54-yard, double stiff-arm run just 12 minutes earlier to tie the game at 14-all.
“We knew it was going to be a wild atmosphere," he said. "We knew they were going to break some and we were going to break some. We just tried to run it down their throat and burn the clock on that last drive.”
Wade, running the offense from the quarterback position after twin brother Destin Wade tweaked a sore ankle on the third play of the game, ran for 173 yards and a pair of scores.
Summit opened the fourth quarter with a second and two at their own 37. Moving to the Page 46 before the Spartans were flagged for an illegal formation, despite the wideout being told he was on the line of scrimmage. The drive immediately stalled, and Summit punted with the score tied at 14.
That’s when Page went on the biggest drive of the night, covering 78 yards in 11 plays and chewing up nearly six minutes. Johnson picked up 48 yards on seven carries, while Cade Walker went 3-for-3 for 27 yards.
Getting ball back at their own 20 with two minutes, Wade dropped back on the play and threw deep as he was being hit. A Page defender ran through the intended receiver and the pass, short of the intended target, was picked off by Colby Burns at the Page 47. The Spartans expected a defensive pass interference call that never came and were vocal in their disappointment. It resulted in three flags that moved the ball to the Summit 10, where Chase Tidmore sealed the contest with a 19-yard field goal.
Johnson gave the credit for his performance to his offensive line, and Page head coach Charles Rathbone concurred.
“We’ve struggled in the offensive line this year," he said. "But I felt like that last drive our offensive line just took over. My exact words Monday were, ‘Offensive line, this is on you. If we’re going to win this game, we’ve got to run the ball.’
“Anytime you beat a team with five or six athletes with Division I offers, it’s a great night. They are a really good team. Coach (Brian) Coleman does a great job, they’ve got some great players and it was a great atmosphere. Hopefully if things go well, we have an all Williamson County rematch in the future.”
For Coleman and his charges, the first loss of the year stings, but he sees it as a chance to move forward.
“I’m proud of my guys," Coleman said. "We fought hard and that’s a good football team. No excuses.
“We told them we can’t let this roll over to next wek. This needs to hurt, but let’s get over it and go to work Monday. We’ve got to play again next Thursday.”
Summit will be on the road at Franklin for the special pre-Fall Break contest while Page will host Centennial. Franklin defeated Centennial 42-41 in a wild double-overtime contest last night.
Page 24, Summit 14
PHS – 7 7 0 10 – 24
SHS – 0 7 7 0 – 14
P – Simon Simmonds 30 yd pass from Cade Walker (3:16) Chase Tidmore kick
S – Keaten Wade 5 yd run (11:48) Elijah Mooney kick
P – Miles Bonn 4 yd pass from Walker (4:41) Tidmore kick
S – K. Wade, 54-yd run (2:16) Mooney kick
P – Bubba Johnson 4-yd run (2:02) Tidmore Kick
P – Tidmore 19-yard FG (0:40)
First Downs 20 14
Rushes-yards 28-131 35-231
Passing yards 146 47
Comp-Att-INT 16-26-2 4-14-1
Penalties 3-20 7-75
Fumbles-lost 0-0 0-0
Page – Johnson 25-143; Walker 3-(-12)
Summit – K. Wade 21-179; Cotton 5-33; Pierce 3-22; Odimegwu 3-5; Hunter 1-0; D. Wade 1-(-3); Hill 1-(-5).
Page – Walker 16-26-2, 146
Summit – K. Wade 4-14-1, 47
Page – Simmonds 2-46; Bonn 6-30; Snider 1-24; Evans 4-19; Cheshire 2-16; Barnett 1-11.
Summit – Lebel 1-20; Odimegwu 2-15; Pierce 1-12.