PITTSBURGH – In the world of fictional literature, an orphan named Oliver asked, “Please sir, may I have some more?”
In the present reality, Oliver High School’s Friday opponent, Brashear, probably wants no more of the Bears.
Brashear (4-2) did just enough to fend off pesky Oliver (1-6) on the Bears’ Homecoming with a thrilling 21-20 double overtime victory Friday afternoon from George Cupples Stadium on the South Side of Pittsburgh.
The fewer than 100 fans in attendance got treated to quite the Homecoming game, even though the Bears committed 11 penalties and turned the ball over four times.
“Yeah (we grew today),” said Oliver head coach Tim Keefer. “But you don’t want to use that as an excuse with a young football team. We’re a AA team and we took a AAAA team to the brink.”
Brashear held a closer-than-comfortable 14-6 lead at the half, with both touhdowns coming on short fields following Oliver turnovers. The Bulls’ first score came after an 18-yard touchdown drive capped with a 7-yard run by Jawanza Bryant. The Bulls’ second score, with :09 left in the half, came courtesy of a 24-yard pass from Adam Lynch to Deshaun Roberts.
But aside from those two drives, Oliver’s defense held the Bulls in check, allowing just 95 offensive yards, including 18 rushing yards. Oliver moved the ball very well, offensively speaking, and sliced Brashear’s lead to 7-6 with a 7:15 touchdown drive capped with a 3-yard touchdown pass from Trevon Kendrick to Shakeem Cox. At one point in the first half, the orange and brown had outgained the black and gold, 167-46.
After halftime, Brashear bogged down offensively, as did Oliver, until the fourth quarter when the Bears suddenly found some life.
Set up with a short field with 8:28 left in regulation, the Bears moved 41 yards in seven plays, and Tyree Mathis scored on a 4 yard run to cut Brashear’s lead to 14-12. Cox found Mark Tench for the successful two-point conversion pass to tie things up with 4:52 left.
Brashear started rolling on its next drive, but Lynch (7-of-17, 100 yards, 2 INT; 8 rush, 26 yards) was intercepted by Tyrell Scott with 1:30 left.
In overtime, Brashear had a chance to win in the first overtime, but failed to convert. After forcing Cox’ third interception of the game, Brashear moved to the Bears’ 1 yard line, but Bull kicker Cody Magliocca shanked a 20-yard field goal, giving Oliver a second chance.
“I thought that was new life for our quarterback,” Keefer said.
Lynch scored a 10-yard run on Brashear’s initial play of double overtime, and Cox hit Kendrick for an 11-yard pass to make it 21-20. But Oliver’s two-point conversion pass sailed out of the back of the end zone.
The Bears finished with 236 yards of offense (77 rushing, 159 passing) and converted 4-of-8 fourth downs, slightly unconventional. Kendrick threw for 33 yards, ran for 39 yards, and caught five passes for 17 yards and had an interception on defense. Cox finished 13-of-30 for 126 yards with a touchdown and three picks. Oliver also committed 11 penalties for 65 yards.
Bryant led Brashear with 38 yards rushing on 10 totes. The Bulls finished with 174 yards of offense.