Billy Holscher's 31-yard field goal wins it for Commack in third OT

Commack placekicker Billy Holscher kicks the winning field Commack placekicker Billy Holscher kicks the winning field goal in overtime against Sachem North. (Oct. 11, 2013) Photo Credit: Daniel De Mato

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Senior Billy Holscher booted a 31-yard field goal in the third overtime to give visiting Commack a thrilling and ultradramatic 31-28 victory over Sachem North Friday night in a battle of unbeaten teams in Suffolk I.

Jesse Kilmetis plunged 3 yards into the middle of the field on third-and-long, bringing the ball to the 15 and setting up Holscher's kick.

Commack (5-0), which entered the game giving up a league-low 34 points, made its defensive stop in the third overtime when a holding penalty stung North (4-1) and moved it out of scoring range.

The teams traded touchdowns in the first two overtime drives that all began from the 20. Malik Pierre scored from the 1 and 2 for North, and Rob Paccione scored from the 1 on a quarterback sneak and Kilmetis also scored from the 1.

North opened the second half with its best drive of the game, and the only one that featured a series of successful running plays. The Flaming Arrow marched 67 yards in 15 plays, culminating in Pierre's 1-yard dive that, with Bryan Morris' kick, tied the score.

The drive had three fourth-down conversions. Trent Crossan hit Pierre for 10 yards on fourth-and-3; Anthony Ross ran 7 yards on fourth-and-4, and Matt Ward caught a tipped pass at the 1 on fourth-and-4.

The Cougars wasted an excellent chance to win it in regulation when they marched 65 yards late in the fourth quarter. But they needed 66. On a bootleg right, Paccione scooted 4 yards to the 1, but in trying to lunge across the goal line, fumbled and the ball bounced through the end zone for a costly touchback with 1:15 left.

North's vaunted offense, featuring what coach Dave Falco likes to call its "four-headed monster" of a backfield, was held in check in the first half.

With Crossan still favoring a sprained ankle, the Flaming Arrows lacked crispness and running backs Pierre, Ross and Kevin Bragaglia combined for only 9 yards rushing.

The only thing that kept North in the game was, oddly enough, the passing of Crossan. He completed 3 of 4 for 109 yards, including a nice 53-yard scoring pass to Ward midway through the second quarter that tied it at 7.

Commack had grabbed a 7-0 lead when Augie Contressa stepped in front of a receiver, intercepted a Crossan pass and returned it 64 yards to the Arrows' 6. It took four plays, but Paccione finally scored on a 1-yard rollout.

Contressa came up from his cornerback spot twice to stop Bragaglia on sweeps for 5-yard losses and middle linebacker Josh Valentin and tackle Kyle Prpich snuffed out inside runs to neutralize an offense that entered averaging 44 points.

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