08/31/13 — Midway turns back Princeton

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Midway turns back Princeton

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on August 31, 2013 11:46 PM


PRINCETON -- Midway certainly felt fortunate.

Princeton felt cheated.

Raider quarterback Taylor Calcutt threw the game-winning touchdown pass with 22 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, capping a 14-7 comeback over the Bulldogs at the Fred Bartholomew Jr. Athletic Complex on Friday evening.

Midway has won all nine meetings in the series since 2005.

"Tonight, we just didn't capitalize when we needed it the most," second-year PHS head coach Derrick Minor.


The Bulldogs (1-1 overall) misfired on four first-half red zone possessions that ended on downs on each occasion. Princeton drove down as far as the Raiders' 7-yard line, but failed to post a touchdown on the scoreboard.

Midway's defense logged several zero-yardage stops and benefited from a couple of dropped passes. The Raiders entered halftime grateful for the scoreless tie, despite giving up 247 yards of total offense.

"Johnny (Frasier) ran fairly hard, we missed a few key blocks when it counted the most and we just could not punch it in," Minor said. "Hindsight, I'm looking for six points, but maybe (we) should have kicked a field goal and got on the board. That's on me.

"The kids played hard, played with heart and character, and it just didn't go in our favor tonight."

Frasier surpassed the 2,000-yard plateau in his career with a 71-yard touchdown gallop with 8:35 left in the third quarter. The junior running back is believed to program's first 2,000-yard career rusher since Mike Atkinson, who carried the ball for then-head coach Harvey Brooks in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Frasier piled up 163 yards on 21 totes.

The Raiders answered with Calcutt's 20-yard scoring strike to Tyler Pope just three-plus minutes later. It was a sign of things to come as Calcutt's receivers consistently found open space behind a Bulldog defense that got sucked into stopping the run on numerous plays.

The receivers dropped some of Calcutt's passes, until Drake Strickland hauled in the game-winning, 56-yard TD reception with 22 seconds left in regulation.

"We had been throwing all night, had probably had about four drops on touchdown passes," a grinning Calcutt said. "I told my boys to just forget about it, stay focused because if you think about what happened in the past, you're not going to catch one in the end.

"I give all the credit to my offensive line because the pass protection on that last pass (to Strickland) was amazing."

Calcutt finished with 103 yards passing on just five completions.