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Houston Field Goal Lifts Danger passed Ice

By Tony Chapman
Nebraska Danger Staff Writer

GRAND ISLAND, NEB – Joe Houston made up for a few mistakes on the last play of the game Friday night for the Nebraska Danger.

Houston, who missed two extra points and a 30-yard field goal 55 seconds left, connected from 42 yards out on the final play of the game. The kick – which hit the right upright before going through – gave Nebraska a 69-66 win over the Colorado Ice and the lead in the Intense Conference.

It was the third time in as many games this season that the Danger and Ice squared off for the conference lead. And, if you were a fan of defense the Heartland Events Center was not the place to be on Friday night.

"This was a big game for us," Danger coach Mike Davis said. "And, boy, Joe had a tough game but to come back and make that kick. What a big time play for our team. We needed this game and it was a tough battle."

The Danger appeared in control for most of the second half, but leading by seven in the final minute the Ice tied the score after Houston's miss. Willie Copeland hit Justin Helwege for the fourth time in the game on a 30-yard pass play and Puckett Mason's extra point tied the game with just under 20 seconds left.

"You have to give Colorado credit for battling all night," Davis said. "We couldn't get the stops we needed to put them away. Obviously, getting off to the start we did was a big for us."

The Danger built a 23-1 lead early in the second quarter and then traded scores with the Ice behind league MVP candidate Jameel Sewell. Sewell tied a pair of Danger franchise records in the win by accounting eight touchdows (four rushing, four passing).

After Colorado recorded a rouge on the opening kickoff, the Danger needed just three plays to score after a pair of passes from Sewell to Andre Piper-Jordan. Sewell capped the drive with a sneak.

On their opening possession, Colorado went for a first down from the Danger 11, but a pass to Justin Helwege was broken up by Carl Gettis. The Danger scored quickly again for a 14-1 lead when Sewell hit Kayne Farquharson from 16 yards out.

Things didn't get any better for Colorado. On their next play the snap went over Copeland's head, before being covered in the end zone for a safety. The Danger then scored after the free kick by going 27 yards in four plays with Sewell scoring on a 2-yard run on the first play of the second quarter.

Both quarterbacks shined. Sewell accounted for 279 yards of offense (90 rushing and 189 passing). Copeland, meanwhile, was 21-for-34 for 274 yards and six touchdowns.

The win also set a franchise record for season wins for Nebraska as they moved to 6-2. They won five games last season and eight total in their first two seasons. Colorado fell to 5-3 on the season.

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