If the Licking Heights High School football players didn’t know much about the new kid on the team, they do now.
They certainly know he can handle the pressure.
Playing in just his second game, Cameron Christian made a game-tying 27-yard field goal with 8.3 seconds remaining and then converted the extra point following Ron Carruthers-Kimball’s 1-yard touchdown run in overtime to lift the host Hornets past Granville 27-26.
“It’s a great, great feeling without a doubt,” said Christian, who also plays soccer. “When we called timeout (before the field goal), all the guys were coming over and trying to pump me up. I told them, ‘I’m going to make this, don’t worry.’ That was definitely harder than the extra point because we had to have the field goal to keep playing.”
The Hornets improved to 7-0 overall and 2-0 in the LCL-Big School division, while Granville fell to 5-2 and 1-1.
Granville had the ball first in overtime and Christian McDermott scored on a 6-yard run around left end on the fourth play, but Bradley Burkholder’s extra-point attempt was wide right.
It took the Hornets seven plays to reach the end zone, as Carruthers-Kimball scored on a fourth-and-1 run by lowering his shoulder after being hit at the 2.
“Coach (Darren Waters) asked me if I wanted it and I told him yes,” Carruthers-Kimball said. “When (the defender) came up I was just thinking like, ‘You can’t stop me.’ We wanted it more.”
Licking Heights led until Granville quarterback Isaac Maurer’s 8-yard run with 8:52 remaining put the Blue Aces ahead 20-17.
Both teams had one more possession before the Hornets began a 13-play, 80-yard drive beginning from their own 10 with 4:52 left that was capped by Christian’s game-tying field goal.
Licking Heights rushed for 423 yards and limited Granville to 206 yards passing.
Robbie Moore had 132 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries, and Carruthers-Kimball finished with 105 yards and a touchdown on 19 attempts. Kendall Bradley added 99 yards on 15 carries, and John Neary supplied 64 yards on 15 carries for the Hornets.
Maurer led Granville with 86 yards on 12 attempts, and he was 16-for-31 passing with two interceptions. Brock Hill had six catches for 127 yards for the Blue Aces.
LH--Neary 4 run (Christian kick)
LH--Moore 50 run (Christian kick)
G--Orth 19 pass from Maurer (Burkholder kick)
LH--Christian 22 FG
G--McDermott 1 run (kick blocked)
G--Maurer 8 run (Burkholder kick)
LH--Christian 27 FG
G--McDermott 6 run (kick failed)
LH--Carruthers-Kimball 1 run (Christian kick)