Let's quickly get to the 4th quarter, because for the most part, that was where all the action was.
Punt, punt, punt, punt, punt, punt, punt
Cactus gets on the board with 4 minutes left in the half on a Mahal Lee to Noah Martinez TD pass. 7-0 Cobras.
Peoria responds scoring with 30 seconds left in the half on a Nate Dobson to Elijah Neal pass from 2 yards out. 7-7.
Cactus is able to drive the field on two huge passes from Lee to Martinez and to Matt Eberhardt and spikes the ball with .5 seconds left on the 8 yard line. Tyler Combs hits the short FG and Cactus is up 10-7 at half.
The score would stay that way until the 4th quarter. On the first play of the 4th, Lee scampers 48 yards and Cactus goes up 17-7.
Cactus safety Dalton Cordts picked off Dobson and the Cobras got 3 points on another Combs FG. 20-7 Cactus and they looked clearly in control.
But Peoria answered, and quickly. Dobson hit Ray Cortez on a 72 yard bomb and cut the lead back to 20-14.
Cactus then coughed the ball up and Peoria recovered at the 40 yard line. Dobson scored on a 20 yard draw play and gave Peoria their first lead of the game at 21-20.
Cactus took the lead right back. Lee ran for 55 yards and then hit Eberhardt on a 25 yard TD pass on 3rd and 19. 27-21 Cactus.
Peoria and Nate Dobson went right back to work. Dobson hit Trevor Babb for a 30 yard gain. Cactus got called for PI, Dobson ran twice for 10 more yard and then scored on another QB keeper from 15 yards out. Peoria took the lead back 28-27.
Cactus got the ball back with 3 minutes and 80 yards to go.
And the Cobras meticulously marched the field. RB Damaria Norris raced for a 1st down run. Lee hooked up with Martinez for two 1st downs on the drive before finding him once more in the endzone, this time from 20 yards out to put the Cobras up 33-28. Lee ran in the two-point conversion and Cactus led 35-28 with 41 seconds left.
The excitement didn't end.
Peoria got the ball at the 35 yard line and Dobson hit Isaiah Veal for 15 quick yards. After scrambling and avoiding a sack, Dobson heaved up a pass and Veal came down with the ball.
Ball at the 10 yard line with 5 seconds to go.
Cactus DE Noah Gibson sacked Dobson and ended the game.
Final: Cactus 35 Peoria 28
Wow, just wow. What a great game! Great atmosphere. Two rivals fighting to the bitter end. One of the best games I have seen this year.
There were multiple good performances in this game but my game ball goes to Mahal Lee. The Cactus junior QB accounted for 4 TDs and a 2-point conversion.null