K Newsome lifts Clyde with game-winning FG

CLYDE — Clyde kicker Brock Newsome admitted kicking footballs compared to soccer balls is a bit different, but there was one outstanding difference.

“There is a lot more excitement out here. There is an insane amount of pressure and it’s just really crazy. I loved it,” Newsome said.

Amazingly, just a few weeks into his career kicking footballs, Clyde coach Ryan Carter called upon the senior to deliver the Fliers a win Friday night with two seconds left and the game with Toledo Start tied at 24.

He drilled a 27-yard field goal to give the Fliers a season-opening 27-24 win.

“I’ve never felt anything like that. It was a really cool night,” Newsome said. “I really wasn’t thinking that much about it. Coach Phillips told me to just go out there and kick. Not much to it and just do it.

“It means a lot to me that they trust me and I trust them just as much and I was glad I could get it done for my brothers on the field.”

In a game, which represented a season opener in every sense with a combined 247 yards in penalties and five turnovers, Clyde found a way to win.

“We went up there last year and won by a field goal and it wasn’t any different this year, I guess,” Carter said. “You have to give them a ton of credit. They played great. We gave them some opportunities with us turning the ball over in the first half.

“To have as much inexperience we have and to put a two-and-a-half minute drive together to give ourselves a field goal attempt says a lot about the fight and the character of our kids.”

At halftime, the game was knotted at 10.

The Spartans took a 17-10 lead in the third quarter on a 56-yard Caleb Coyne touchdown pass to Jamarion Gaines. The third quarter ended with Start having the lead.

However, on the first play of the fourth period, Clyde’s Braydi Clark busted into the end zone from 12 yards out to tie the game.

Clyde drove the ball down to the 1-yard line, but them turned the ball over with a fumble with 10 minutes left.

After forcing a three-and-out from the Start offense, Clyde had a crucial fourth-down-and-17 from Start’s 33.

Instead of pinning the Spartans deep in their own end, Carter dialed up a running back pass as Cam Farrar took a handoff and threw a 33-yard strike to Adam Koviak for a monstrous touchdown, which gave the Fliers a 24-17 advantage with 5:10 remaining.

“Part of that was me having confidence in our defense,” Carter said. “They’ve been playing well. We took a shot … it wasn’t drawn up quite the way it worked out, but Cam made a great play and a great throw and Koviak made a great play for us.”

Clyde had all the momentum, while Start had to drive the ball 89 yards with no timeouts to tie the game.

After four first downs, Clyde halted the Spartans offense and forced them to go for it on a fourth-and-8. Start QB Caleb Coyne dropped back and threw a bomb to Gaines, who adjusted to the ball and sprinted into the end zone for a game-tying 44-yard score with 2:36 left.

Clyde had a crucial third-and-2 from its own 33. First-year quarterback Ryan Lozier dropped back and connected on a 38-yard pass to Koviak, setting the Fliers up with the Newsome game-winner.

“We talked to (Newsome) about how we were struggling with kickers and we talked to Brock,” Carter said. “His dad’s a friend. His dad played football and was a 1,500-yard rusher for us here back when he played. We talked him into coming out here and giving it a shot. We were fortunate to get him an opportunity there at the end to knock it through.”

The Fliers started well in their new wing-T formation with an opening-drive score. Gunner Golden scored on a 2-yard run.

Turnovers were a big part of the first half as Clyde’s Andy Adams recovered a Start fumble at Clyde’s 12. Then Clyde fumbled and Start’s Darrell McMillian ran it all the way to the end zone for a 47-yard return. Later in the first half, Clyde’s Cam Farrar recorded an interception and ran it down to Start’s 9-yard line. On the ensuing play, Lozier’s pass was picked off by Start’s Deshawntae Madison.

In the end, Golden carried the ball 30 times for 72 yards, while Clark added 19 carries for 66 yards. The Fliers ran the ball 54 times to just 15 passing attempts.

“We definitely switched some things up and I think it just fits our personnel better,” Carter said. “I’ve always been a spread coach, that’s what I grew up in and that’s what I ran in college and to make a switch in the offseason takes some time and takes a lot of the kids buying in. I wasn’t sure. You never know on those things.

“We have a lot of things we need to shore up tonight, but for the most part on Night 1, I thought we ran it pretty well.”