If Thursday Night Football on the NFL Network was as exciting as the game Glenvar played last Thursday night the ratings would be much higher. The Highlanders lost a 55-51 shootout to Hidden Valley in a game at Bogle Field that wasn’t decided until the final minute of play.
“I’ve never been involved in a game like that,” said Glenvar coach Kevin Clifford. “We had four turnovers and a botched punt and we still almost won the game. Our kids went hard and didn’t quit.”
After giving up 42 points in the first half some teams might have quit. The host Titans scored 21 points in the first quarter and 21 more in the second to lead 42-28 at the half. Glenvar had a 69 yard TD pass from Aiden Wolk to Jackson Swanson, a two yard TD run by Kyle Hanks, an 18 yard TD pass to Dawson Anderson and Carl Muse field goals of 24 and 29 yards for their 28 points, which normally would be enough for a decent lead at intermission.
“We had no pass rush at all,” said Clifford. “We made some adjustments at halftime and played better defense in the third quarter.”
The Highlanders shut out Hidden Valley in the third quarter but couldn’t put any points on the board themselves, setting up a wild fourth period that saw the two teams combine for 36 points. Glenvar scored the first 16 on a two yard run by Hanks and a 41 yard TD pass from Wolk to Dagan Williams that closed the gap to one. The extra point was missed on the second score and the Titans held on to a 42-41 lead with 8:47 remaining.
Glenvar took their first lead of the game on the their next possession, as they marched to the red zone and Muse kicked a 28 yard field goal with 4:04 to go, but the fun was just starting.
Hidden Valley answered with a 25 yard TD pass with 2:28 to go. The Titans failed on a two point conversion and it was 48-44 at that point.
The ensuing kickoff went for a touchback and Glenvar took over on their own 20, down four. It took them all of one play for Wolk to find Williams in the flat, and Dagan turned it up the sideline in front of the Glenvar bench and ran for an 80 yard score just 14 seconds after Hidden Valley had taken the lead. The extra point gave Glenvar a 51-48 edge.
Glenvar pinned the Titans inside their own 20 on the kickoff, and at that point Hidden Valley needed a field goal to send the game into overtime with time running out. However, on third down they completed a pass to the Glenvar 46, then quarterback Sam Dragovich found Ashton Carroll in the middle of the field and the speedy Titan receiver raced to the pylon and scored with 1:33 on the clock to give the Titans the lead again. The extra point made it 55-51 and Glenvar needed a touchdown, but no one was headed for their car just yet.
That changed when Hidden Valley intercepted a long pass with 43 seconds to go, allowing them to kneel down and run out the clock. It was a game no one at Bogle Stadium will forget, with 106 points scored and almost 1,100 yards of total offense.
“I had a friend here from Florida for my son’s wedding and he said it was the most exciting game he ever saw,” said Clifford. “But you hate to lose a game like that. Give them credit, they made the plays when they had to.”
Wolk finished with 413 yards passing, just seven away from the school record held by Levi Mullins. Aiden was 24 for 33 with four touchdown passes.
Dagan Williams had 10 catches for 173 yards while Swanson had nine for 176 and Mason Anderson had four catches for 33. Hanks had 113 yards rushing on 21 carries and Wolk ran 21 times for 97 yards.
The win allowed Hidden Valley to remain undefeated at 4-0 while Glenvar lost for the first time, falling to 3-1. The Highlanders will be back home this Friday for their Three Rivers District opener against Carroll County, and it’s also Homecoming. Carroll is off to an 0-3 start with losses to Grayson County, Galax and George Wythe, in double overtime, last week.
“They have a good quarterback and they’re much improved,” said Clifford. “They lost some close games, it won’t be easy.”