TAMPA — As players and coaches from Durant and Hillsborough shook hands at midfield after the Cougars’ 32-30 nondistrict victory Friday , the game officials walked off the field — with a police escort.
The thriller at Chelo Huerta Field lasted nearly three hours as the teams combined for 32 penalties totaling 300 yards. On Durant’s final touchdown drive with seven minutes left — capped by a 1-yard run by Trey VanDeGrift — Hillsborough was hit with four penalties on the same play (three unsportsmanlike calls following one for illegal substitution).
And on Hillsborough’s last drive that ended with a 40-yard pass to Anthony King from Dwayne Lawson with 42.3 seconds left, Durant
(2-6) received two pass interference flags and one for unsportsmanslike conduct as the Terriers (5-2) drove 95 yards.
Senior defensive tackle Chris Powell prevented overtime by stuffing Lawson on a run up the middle on the two-point attempt.
“I thought it was going to be a pass,” Powell said. “I was surprised (Lawson) ran it, and I stopped him.”
Chris Atkins led Durant with 138 yards rushing and one TD. VanDeGrift threw for a pair of scores. Lawson accounted for all four Hillsborough touchdowns and finished with 326 yards total offense.