Cardinals

The eighth-ranked Trinity Valley Cardinals returned home to host Navarro in a rematch of last week's game for the regional semifinal of the SWJCFC championship.

In a highly defensive first half highlighted by field goals, TVCC scored their first touchdown before halftime to lead at the break. The second half featured more offense and Navarro rallied late to knock off TVCC late by the score of 26-24.

The Cardinals scored first, 3-0, on Eddie Godina's 51-yard field goal, which set the SWJCFC record for most field goals in a season at 20.

After Race Moser recovered a Bulldog fumble, TVCC would settle for another field goal and led 6-0.

With 4:45 in the first quarter, Navarro settled for a field goal to trail 6-3 after reaching the Cardinal end zone.

The Card defense got a stop on the next Bulldog drive as Derrick Ray and Christian Owens picked up two sacks, knocking them out of field goal range and forcing them to punt.

With 11:30 to go until halftime, Navarro was at TVCC's three-yard line on 4th and 3 and went for it, but another Cardinal defensive stop came through.

With 8:44, it was tied 6-6 after a Bulldog field goal. 

Owens recovered a fumble to give the Cards the ball with 2:10 to play, and with 32 seconds, Keonta Fiakpui caught an 18-yard touchdown catch to put TVCC ahead, 12-6, at halftime following a missed extra point.

The Cardinals marched down to the Bulldog 18 out of halftime, but after illegal touching and false start penalties, they would settle for Godina's third field goal to make it 15-6.

As the fourth quarter started, Devin Morrison trimmed the lead to 15-13 for Navarro with his nine-yard TD run.

With 10:20 left in the game, Godina's fourth field goal made it 18-13 Cardinals and that tied the NJCAA single season record with 23.

With less than seven minutes, the Bulldogs were knocking at the door in Cardinal territory. Parker McNeil was sacked by Owens on third down, forcing a crucial fourth down. It looked like they would settle for three, but it was a fake play and McNeil completed a pass for a 1st and goal.

With a 4th and goal, Navarro punched in a three-yard rushing score and took their first lead at 19-18 with 4:35 left after a failed two point attempt.

The Cardinals took their time and used a three-minute drive to march down the field and capped it off with a 17-yard touchdown catch by Willie Cherry to take the lead back at 24-19 with 1:32. Two points failed.

With a 1:26, Navarro needed a touchdown. The drive was highlighted by a 26 yard catch from Quentin Lee and he would cap the drive off with a 20-yard touchdown catch as Navarro led again at 26-24.

TVCC now needed to get into field goal range with 20 seconds left and one timeout.

With nine seconds left, Jeremy Hunt took off and ran out of bounds with only two seconds. However, the Cards were out of field goal range at their own 49. Hunt tossed the ball up for a hail mary, but it was incomplete, allowing Navarro to escape Bruce Field with the 26-24 playoff win, avenging last week's game and sending them to the conference championship at home against New Mexico Military, who had upset Kilgore, 20-10.

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