MIDLOTHIAN - Powhatan’s defense gave the Cosby Titans all they could handle on Friday night.
The Indians’ defensive unit held the Titans in check for most of the second half, including three pivotal drives where Cosby netted zero yards.
But the final drive for the Titans - and the leg of kicker Kyle Lowe - proved to be the difference. Lowe split the uprights from 27 yards out as time expired to get his Titans the win in an 18-15 nailbiter.
“I feel like we’ve done this five out of the six weeks,” Indians coach Mike Henderson said. “We wait until too late in the second half to start playing. We just don’t execute well on offense in the first half a lot of the time. We’re getting better. Our record is what it is.”
Turnovers were an issue for the Indians during the game, but particularly in the first half as they put them in untenable situations against Cosby. On the first play of the game for Powhatan’s offense, after Cosby went up 3-0, the Titans’ Matthew Channell picked off a pass and returned it inside the Indians’ 10 yard line. One play later, Cosby scored a touchdown to make it 9-0. Two drives later, after Lowe kicked another field goal for Cosby to make it 12-0, Powhatan had another drive stopped immediately by a turnover as the ball hit the turf after a completed pass-and-catch and Cosby recovered the fumble.
But despite having the ball at the Powhatan’s 10 after the turnover, the Indians defense held strong and the Titans settled for a field goal and a 15-0 lead that would stand until halftime.
In the second half, however, the Indians’ defense turned the tables on Cosby - and turned a turnover into a score to begin their comeback.
Jaysun Carroll picked off Powell on a fourth down attempt by the Titans on their first drive of the second half. Four plays later, Indians quarterback Hans Rehme ran it in from 33 yards out to make it 15-7.
Powhatan’s defense stood tall throughout the game, but were especially effective on three consecutive Cosby possessions following Rehme’s score.
“The defense played great the whole game,” Henderson said. “They’ve played great every week. We need to do some more on offense to score points when we have the opportunity.”
Cosby had three possessions, including one after a Powhatan fumble on a promising drive, in which the Indians defense held them to a net zero yards.
Following the third of those - and helped by a defensive pass interference call on the Titans - the Indians scored on a four-yard run by Isaac Trent. Trent then scored on the ensuing 2-point conversion to tie the game at 15-all.
“We worked hard on goal line offense this week,” Henderson said. “We put (Trent) in at tailback in the goal line offense. He’s one of our best defensive players and we gave him a role on the offense. That looked good.”
On Cosby’s next possession, a 30-yard strike from Powell to Matthew Channell got the Titans in good position, but the Indians defense shut down the Titans offense after that play, including stuffing Powell on a 4th-and-1 to turn the ball over on downs.
Unfortunately for the Indians, the offense was unable to take advantage of this late-game drive as a short run and back-to-back incompletions stalled the drive and forced Powhatan to punt.
The last drive of the game belonged to the Titans and was helped along by a defensive pass interference call on the Indians.
The Titans methodically moved down the field until Powell found Erick Smith all alone in the Powhatan secondary, a play that moved the ball to inside the Indians’ 10-yard-line.
A run by Michael Bourne centered the kick and Lowe converted the game-winning field goal as time expired, following an attempt by the Indians to ice him with a timeout.
Powhatan fell to 3-3 after the loss to the Titans. The Indians will host Monacan for its homecoming game on Friday.