The weather could not have been more fitting, because in a few hours the last two high school football teams in Madison County still fighting through the state Class-C playoff bracket would battle each other at John F. Scully Field. Only one team would advance to the state championship game in Fairview, while the other would face an end to their season as bitter as the cold wind whipping through the earholes in their helmets.
The game got off to a slow start, with the Twin Bridges Falcons struggling to protect the football as it bounced like a rock across the frozen field. The Falcons fumbled the opening kickoff, and were unable to move the explosive offense they displayed throughout the season.
The Ennis Mustangs drew blood first, with an 8-yard touchdown pass to sophomore Connor Sullivan with 7:36 left to play in the first quarter. The Falcons answered right back at the 6:20 mark on a long touchdown pass from senior quarterback Tyler Lott to junior Cole Miotke.
Twin Bridges scored again to take the lead with 1:54 to play in the first half on a 13-yard pass from Lott to Miotke. With seconds left on the clock Ennis blew an opportunity deep inside the red zone to put up another score before halftime.
The Falcons came out in the second half ready to pick up where they left off, managing the game clock and exhibiting dominance over the Mustangs. While both teams continued to slug it out, it was clear Twin Bridges was running away with the game as they scored again on a 24-yard pass to Danny Mehring as time expired in the third quarter. Tyler Lott sealed the deal with a 2-yard touchdown run with 3:33 left to play. After the game Lott credited the Twin Bridges defense with the win.
“We never get too down on ourselves, just keep playing the game and eventually we’ll pull it out,” he said.
“Ennis ran the ball hard and they didn’t quit. It was a great game but we took care of it.”
Twin Bridges coach Rob Lott reflected on the team’s success throughout the season as fans swarmed him after the game.
“Those seniors have played so long together,” he said. “These guys aren’t going to quit. They had a goal in mind, they wanted to get it done and it just helps to have a veteran team like that.”
The Twin Bridges Falcons will travel across the state to Fairview this weekend to play for the 2011 Montana Class C football state championship.