With time winding down, a light rain falling and a trip to the KASSAA senior football playoffs on the line Thursday afternoon, NDSS Golden Hawk quarterback Ben Fisher unleashed three Hail Mary passes.
The first two went unanswered, the last was intercepted by the Kingston Secondary School Bears, effectively ending Napanee’s season with a 23-22 loss.
Despite falling behind early, Napanee rallied and held a 22-20 lead with three minutes to play in the fourth quarter. A costly fumble allowed the Bears to regain possession. KSS was able to get the ball to the 30 yard line on the ensuing series, which they converted on a field goal to go up 23-22. Napanee had less than a minute to try to answer and attempted to do so with aerial passes, but they just couldn’t connect on a receiver.
Josh McNamee had a rushing touchdown, Fisher had a quarterback sneak and the defense recovered a safety in the first half for Napanee, who entered the break down 20-16. Nate Gifkins ran in a touchdown in the third quarter to give the Hawks a 22-20 lead. The ensuing extra kick was blocked, which would prove costly later in the game that ended with the visitors Bears securing the one point victory.
Both the Hawks and Bears entered the game with 2-3 records on the season, meaning the winner would secure the final playoff spot. In a game of inches that twice saw the chains brought onto the field to measure for a first down, the Hawks ultimately wound up just short.
-NDSS’ junior football team wrapped up their season on Wednesday with a 31-0 loss to Sydenham. The Hawks were held winless in five games this year.
-NDSS’ field hockey team was shutout 5-0 against Frontenac in the KASSAA quarter-finals, ending their season. Napanee entered the game as the sixth seed overall.
-Both NDSS’ senior and junior boys volleyball teams were defeated by KSS. The playoffs are scheduled to get underway on Nov. 2. The seniors hold the sixth seed with a record of 6-5 with one game left to play. The juniors are clinging to the eigth and final seed with a 4-7 record, also with one game to play.