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Magnolia West steals win from Foster in fourth quarter

September 17, 2018

Foster was up by 15 points late in the third quarter — then it fumbled the win away.

Magnolia West recovered six fumbles, and quarterback John Matocha led the comeback, throwing for 267 yards and three touchdowns and rushing for three TDs in a 43-39 win Friday at Mustang Stadium.

Foster dropped to 1-2 going into district. The Mustangs improved to 2-1.

Running back Issac Johnson supplied 265 yards and four touchdowns on 18 rushes for the Falcons. But he also fumbled four times, losing three, including one with 8:29 left in the game, ending his evening.

That turnover, the Falcons’ fifth, led to Matocha’s 8-yard TD run, pulling Magnolia West within 39-37 with 5:27 remaining.

Without Johnson, the Falcons went three-and-out on their ensuing series, and then wide receiver Trevon Lemelle supplied the winning play, hauling in a pinpoint pass from Matocha downfield and then dragging a defender into the end zone for a 51-yard score with 1:25 to go in the fourth.

The Falcons had one last chance, but QB Ryan Stubblefield fumbled and Gage Wade recovered, allowing them to run out the clock. Wade recovered three fumbles, including the last two.

Hayden Burge supplied 77 rushing yards and 82 yards on five receptions.

Magnolia West finished with 409 yards and 20 first downs, with three via Foster penalties in the second half.

Foster lost three fumbles in the first half but still led 20-17 at halftime.

Magnolia West punted on the game’s opening possession but took the ball right back after the Falcons fumbled the return, leading to a 6-yard touchdown run by Matocha for an early 7-0 advantage.

The Falcons rallied for a 13-7 lead, but another special-teams fumble in the second quarter, this time by the punter, helped Magnolia West regain the lead, 17-13, on a 37-yard TD grab by Simon Gonzalez.

That score followed a 29-yard field goal by Seth Hayes, who also caught at TD pass.

But Johnson, who briefly exited with an injury in the first quarter, then fumbled in the second, wouldn’t back down.

The junior rebounded by putting Foster back on top with a 4-yard score with 38 seconds left in the first half. Johnson also touched the ball on Foster’s first seven plays, including four straight runs on its opening drive. He scored his first TD on a 1-yard carry after a 43-yard burst to the goal line.

Johnson had 165 yards on 12 carries with a 16-yard reception at the break.

Then he scored on runs of 57 and 11 yards in the third, giving Foster a 33-17 lead, but he couldn’t hold onto the ball — and the Falcons couldn’t secure the game.

The Falcons finished with 490 yards and 18 first downs.

WR Cody Jackson supplied three receptions for 94 yards and one TD, and Shadeed Ahmed had four catches for 75 yards.

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