Coyotes prayer answered in South Dakota Showdown victory

Published: Nov. 13, 2021 at 8:38 PM CST
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VERMILLION (KTIV) - Football is a confusing sport. The ball bounces any way it wants, the coaches do things that fans can’t comprehend, and in the end when you go to a game its never safe to say which team is going to win or lose. Even with one second left on the clock.

That’s all the University of South Dakota Coyotes needed at least.

The game was great from beginning to end with South Dakota State breaking the scoreless tie with a field goal to go up 3-0 in the first. Then in the second quarter, the Jackrabbits put a touchdown on the board with a six yard pass from Chris Oladokun to Zach Heins to go up 10-0.

South Dakota responded with a touchdown of their own in the closing minutes of the second half. When Carson Camp connected with Caleb Vander Esch from 18 yards out to make it a 10-7 ball game going into the half.

South Dakota State proceeded to put a field goal through to make it 13-7 in the third. Then the Yotes responded with a 13 yard touchdown run from Nate Thomas to make it 14-13, before putting a field goal through to go up 17-13 early in the fourth quarter.

SDSU then scored a touchdown on a Pierre Strong Jr. run to go up 20-17. After that chaos entered the Dakota Dome in Vermillion South Dakota.

First the Coyotes found themselves just bout a chain link short of a first down. On fourth and inches the Yotes came out in a shot gun formation, handed the ball off to Travis Theis who proceeded to get stuffed at the line of scrimmage. Turning the ball over on downs to the Jackrabbits.

After picking up four yards on two plays and the Yotes only having one timeout left, one would think a first down with around a minute forty to go would seal it for the Jackrabbits. But one would be wrong.

A bizarre late sub led to a flag being called on the Yotes on third down and the Jackrabbits picking up what seemed to be the dagger of a first down when they completed a pass amidst the South Dakota confusion.

But in football close games are never over, a 3 yard gain run on first down left it at second and 7 with 1:39 left as USD took its final timeout. Some quick thinking would tell you that kneeling the ball would not win it for the Jackrabbits quite yet.

After two more three yard runs from Pierre Strong Jr. South Dakota State found themselves in a 4th and 1 situation with seven ticks left in the game. So they punted the ball and time expired on the play right. WRONG!

The Jackrabbits decided they would try to have quarterback Chris Oladukon run out the clock then throw the ball away when time expired. One problem, Oladukon under pressure from the Coyotes defense threw the ball away too early and left one final second on the clock for South Dakota.

One second, One play, 57 yards. It’s not unheard of Roger Staubach did it with the Cowboys, Doug Flutie with Boston College, or for a more recent reference Aaron Rodgers countless times with the Green Bay Packers.

So freshman quarterback Carson Camp strolled out took the snap avoided being sacked and just heaved one as far as he could toward the endzone. The ball was tipped not once but twice before finally ending up in the hands of Jeremiah Webb in the endzone giving the Yotes a 23-20 victory on the most stunning play this young sports reporter has seen.

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