SPRINGFIELD — The Wayne let an opportunity to clinch a playoff spot slip through its hands on a rain-soaked Evans field in Springfield, as the Warriors lost 33-26 in overtime to the Springfield Wildcats.
Wayne and Springfield traded touchdowns in the first quarter to knot things up at 7, but a key stop by Wayne in the second quarter presented Wayne with an opportunity to take the lead as the rain started to fall.
Wayne drove the ball inside the Springfield 10 yard line, but two holding penalties on the Warriors made them settle for a Trevor Hawley 37 yard field goal and a 10-7 lead.
Springfield answered with a touchdown to go up 14-10 with about five minutes left in the half.
On the ensuing Wayne drive, quarterback Rashad McKee hit senior receiver Renz Johnson on a deep pass to the Springfield 1 yard line that set up a 1 yard touchdown, but Wayne missed the extra point, 16-14 Warriors.
Wayne’s defense stopped Springfield and forced the Wildcats to punt it back with just over a minute left in the half.
Springfield intercepted a tipped pass and returned it to the Wayne 30 yard line with 45 seconds left in the half. It moved the ball inside the 20 and kicked a 30 yard field goal as time expired, 17-16 Springfield.
Each team added a field goal and a touchdown in the second half, but Springfield missed an extra point so regulation ended in a 26-26 tie.
Springfield took the ball first and wasted no time getting on the board. Springfield senior quarterback Raheim Moss hit senior receiver Michael Brown-Stephens streaking down the sideline past the Wayne defense in the end zone, 33-26 Wildcats.
On the first play of Wayne’s possession, Devin Nelson ran 10 yards up the middle for a first down, but the Warrior offense stalled and did not answer the Wildcats’ score.
Wayne has some scenarios that will get it into the playoffs, but it must first take care of business next week at home against the Trotwood Rams. Springfield has clinched a spot in the playoffs. The Wildcats close out the regular season next week at home vs. Fairmont.
One scenario that puts Wayne in the playoffs requires Springfield to beat Fairmont next week.
The top five of Region 3 is pretty much set, but there are seven teams left fighting for the final four spots. Pickerington North needs every team ahead of it to lose and not even that makes it a sure bet.
1. A Wayne win combined with Lancaster and Hilliard Darby losses gets Wayne the number 8 seed.
2. A Wayne win with any combination of loses by two or more teams ahead of Wayne will depend on how the computer calculates the weight of the win and the losses.
Ranking and Week 10 game
#6 Fairmont at Springfield (8-1)
#7 Miamisburg Northmont (8-1)
#8 Hilliard Darby Dublin Scioto (8-2) Division 2
#9 Lancaster Reynoldsburg (8-1)
#10 Wayne Trotwood (6-3)
#11 Pickerington North Gahanna Lincoln (5-4)