By HOWARD SENZELL
FOR THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Fort Bragg’s gamble on a two-point conversion in overtime paid off and the Timberwolves edged visiting St. Helena, 22-21, in a matchup of teams tied for first in the NCL I on Friday night.
Fort Bragg can win the league title outright with a victory over Cloverdale next Friday.
St. Helena had the ball first in overtime and Sebastian Segura scored on a 5-yard run. The extra point kick was good.
The Timberwolves came back to score on their first play from scrimmage, a 10-yard run by Zach Smith. Then coach Roy Perkins decided to go for the win. Smith got the call and while St. Helena defenders got their hands on the running back, they couldn’t bring him down.
“It was a well-played, exciting football game,” St. Helena coach Brandon Farrell said. “Somebody had to lose, and it turned out to be us.”
The Saints lost for the first time and their record is now 8-1 and 5-1 in league. Fort Bragg is 8-1 and 6-0.
Smith scored all three Timberwolves touchdowns. Before his overtime heroics, the junior scored on runs of 75 and 25 yards in the first quarter to give his team a 14-0 lead.
St. Helena came back to tie the score on a Segura 9-yard run and a Richard Hoppe 3-yard run.