Wildcats Crawl Through to Beat Islanders


Madelyn Augustine

Junior quarterback Tristan Gomes looks for an open receiver as he scrambles.

Nathan Thomas, Executive Striv Producer

The fourth ranked Millard West Wildcats were able to come through in double overtime to defeat the undefeated Grand Island Islanders by a score of 30-24.

Junior quarterback Tristan Gomes lead the way for the Wildcats as he threw for 240 yards and lead the running game with just 49 yards on the night. His longest run of 10 came on the final play, a touchdown that ended the game in Millard West’s favor.

Gomes was able to lead the Wildcats to a pair of touchdown drives in the first half with a run of six from himself, and a catch from senior receiver Jackson Hazen.

Grand Island fought back to tie the game after multiple miscues by Millard West’s special teams, and a long 62 yard run. Junior quarterback Carson Cahoy and senior running back John Reilly both lead the offense, with 80 and 103 yards respectively.

The Wildcats looked like they had the game all but wrapped up with a 55 yard touchdown catch and run by senior receiver Garrett Kennedy with 3 minutes left to play, and a huge defensive stand to force a punt and get the ball back.

On the ensuing possession, Gomes and company ran back onto the field with around 90 seconds remaining on a big third down and six. A first down surely meant the game would be over. Gomes took the snap, faked the handoff, and looked for a screen pass to junior receiver Dalys Beanum, but cornerback Ben Reilly jumped the pass, and took it back all 65 yards to tie the game at 21.

The Wildcats had the chance to end it, after senior kicker Sam Fedde’s 44 yard attempt with one second was left a bit short and to the left. If someone were to win this game, it would have to come in overtime.

The Wildcat offense took the field first, and in their three plays, all passes, gained a total of five yards, and called Fedde on again, who hit this one right down the middle from about 22 yards out.

Grand Island used their set of downs from the 10 yard line, picked up nine, and decided to extend the game to a second period of extra time with a field goal themselves.

After the short break, both teams took the field, and first play, Beanum came in the clutch with his second interception on the night, picking off a pass to give the Millard West offense a chance with the game tied and the rain starting to really pour down.

Gomes would not be stopped by anyone when he returned to the field. He called his own number on the first and goal at the 10, and took the designed quarterback run past a couple of defenders and into the end zone to make the game final with a score 30-24.

Both teams showed out in the expected heavyweight battle in the cold and rain.

Grand Island will head home with their first loss of the season, and host Lincoln Southwest on Friday, Oct. 12th. Millard West will take a road trip to Lincoln with their five game winning streak and match up against Lincoln East on the same night.