Pine Tree Comes from Behind to Beat Nacogdoches, 28-21
LONGVIEW — It was a matter of being at the right place at the right time for the Pine Tree Pirates on Friday night.
Eddie Calico, Trevor Thomas and Caleb Chumley all capitalized on late opportunities to lead Pine Tree to a come-from-behind 28-21 victory over the Nacogdoches Dragons at Pine Tree Stadium.
With Nacogdoches leading 21-13 in the game's final minutes, Nacogdoches running back Derrick Fields fumbled in Dragon territory, and Calico recovered for the Pirates. When Pine Tree got the ball back, it made no secret of its plan — quarterback Jake Oden running every play.
Oden ran five straight times, the final a 6-yard touchdown run to cut the score to 21-19. On the two-point conversion, Oden handed it to his big fullback Calico to tie the game at 21 with approximately four minutes left in the game. The clock and scoreboard were out for the majority of the contest because of a malfunction four plays into action in the first quarter.
After the Pirates tied the game, Thomas picked off Nacogdoches' Hunter McClellan and returned the ball 30 yards to the 12-yard-line to put the Pirates in position to take their first lead since 7-0 early in the first quarter.
On the first play of the drive, Jonathan Giddings ran the ball to the 1 yard line before fumbling the ball into the end zone, but Chumley was there to land on the football for the go-ahead touchdown.
Nacogdoches moved the ball on the next drive, but a sack on fourth down at the Pine Tree 28-yard-line all but ended the Dragons' hopes of their first victory of the season.
Oden accounted for 234 of Pine Tree's 290 yards. The senior rushed for 109 yards and two touchdowns on 21 carries. He also connected on a 59-yard pass to Giddings in the third quarter with the Pirates trailing 21-7.
The Dragons' duo of Patrick Ledet and McClelland had 284 yards through the air and three touchdowns. L.J. Barnes and Tae Thomas each caught six passes for a total of 246 yards and a touchdown each.
The Dragons trailed 7-0 after the first quarter but scored three straight times — twice in the second quarter and once midway through the third — to take a 21-7 lead, their largest advantage of the season.
Nacogdoches (0-5) and Pine Tree (0-2) will each begin district play next week. The Dragons will host Jacksonville in the District 16-4A opener, while the Pirates will travel to Texas High in the District 14-4A opener.