Beechwood wins 15th title in OT thriller

LEXINGTON, Kentucky – Beechwood has won the third-most state championships in Kentucky high school football history, but they have never won one quite like this. The Tigers knocked off the Lexington Christian Eagles 24-23 in overtime on Friday afternoon at Kroger Field in thrilling fashion as Brady Moore led a crew of Tigers to burst through the Eagles’ front to block Andrew Dobbs’ point-after attempt.

Regulation ended moments earlier on a failed 44-yard field attempt by Dobbs that would have given the Eagles the win in regulation. His kick missed by inches, hitting the left upright before bouncing off the crossbar and back into the field of play.

Beechwood lost the coin toss and got the ball first in the extra frame. It took one play for the Tigers to get on the scoreboard as Cameron Hergott connected with Torin O’Shea on a 10-yard pass. LCA answered shortly thereafter on a 3-yard run by running Xavier Brown before the block PAT ended the contest.

Early on this game was all Beechwood, but for the second straight week they allowed their opponent to rally and take the lead after trailing by double digits.

The Tigers dominated the first half in nearly every aspect, but led only 14-3 at intermission. It took three plays in the game before Cameron Hergott had Beechwood in the endzone on a 25-yard run. Hergott added a second quarter TD pass to Tanner Jackson from 10 yards out to give the Tigers an early two-touchdown lead.

LCA didn’t even get the ball into the red zone until 1:05 left in the first half, but they had to settle for an Andrew Dobbs’ 26-yard field goal.

The Eagles got the ball first in the second half and it only took them 51 seconds to cut the lead to four as Xavier Brown exploded for a 52-yard TD run. Quarterback Drew Nieves added a 7-yard score about eight minutes later and Lexington Christian led 17-14 after three quarters.

The teams battled back and forth before Michael Hatfield picked off a pass for Beechwood and returned 59 yards. Nieves made a great play tracking him down to prevent the pick six and keep the Eagles in the game. Colin Graman drilled a 35-yard field for Beechwood to tie the game at 17-17 with 2:09 to play.

Hergott was named the Mingua Beef Jerky MVP in his final game of his career. His three-year run as the team’s starter will be one that will be remembered for some time. In his final contest he threw for 154 yards and two touchdowns and carried the ball 25 times for 97 yards and a touchdown.

Seven different receivers pulled in a pass for the Tigers led by Mitchell Berger, who caught three balls for 30 yards. Berger also had an interception and a fumble recovery on defense. Michael Hatfield led the charge on defense with 11 total tackles and an interception. Cole also had a pick.

Brown led the charge for the Eagles, rushing for 139 yards and two touchdowns on 15 carries in the loss. Nieves ran for 63 yards and a score to help the effort, but completed just 12-of-26 for 138 yards, 0 TD’s and three interceptions.

Lexington Christian held the advantage in total yards (389 to 284), but they lost the turnover battle 4:2 and held the ball for nearly eight minutes less than the Tigers. LCA had an unexpected 251 rushing yards, but couldn’t translate it into a victory.

This marks Beechwood’s 15th state title, but it is the first ever Class 2A state championship for the team. This is the second time the Tigers have won a state title game in OT. They beat Harrodsburg 21-14 in overtime to win the 1996 Class 1A championship. This was the fourth time we’ve ever had a 1-point win in overtime in any KHSAA finals and the 12th overall OT game in KHSAA state finals history all-time.

Beechwood 7-7-0-3-7-24
Lexington Christian 0-3-14-0-6-23

B: Cameron Hergott 25-yard run (Colin Graman kick)
B: Cameron Hergott 10-yard pass to Tanner Jackson (Graman kick)
L: Andrew Dobbs 26-yard field goal
L: Xavier Brown 52-yard run (Dobbs kick)
L: Drew Nieves 10-yard run (Dobbs kick)
B: Colin Graman 35-yard field goal
B: Cameron Hergott 10-yard pass to Torin O’Shea (Graman kick)
L: Xavier Brown 3-yard run (PAT blocked)


RECORDS: Beechwood (10-2); Lexington Christian (10-2).

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*Image from @KHSAA/Twitter

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