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Gazette Premium Content L-P sweeps away losing streak

By Kevin Carmody Updated: September 14, 2013 at 11:59 am

Lewis-Palmer didn't particularly like the taste of going through the week remembering how it blew a second-half lead last week against Northridge. So Paul Tillotson, Matt Brines and a host of Rangers made sure someone else felt it instead.

Tillotson led a furious second-half comeback by running for one score and passing for another, and Brines capped it with a 10-yard run on the first play of overtime after a Rampart field goal as the Rangers broke a three-game losing streak to start the season with a 34-31 victory at Don Breese Stadium.

Lewis-Palmer (1-3) put its defense on the field for the first drive of overtime and held Rampart (1-2) to just seven yards on three plays before a Triston Bailey 20-yard field goal made it a 31-28 Rams lead.

Then Brines, a senior, ran a toss sweep to the right, smashing into the end zone and sending the scores of homecoming fans into euphoria.

"The pitch was working all night, so we figured we'd stick to what works," Brines said. "My line blocked it perfectly. It was amazing, surreal."

Trailing 21-7 at halftime, Lewis-Palmer found its rhythm offensively and disrupted a Rampart offense that scored on three of its five drives in the first half.

Tillotson engineered a 12-play, 44-yard drive, capped by his 5-yard keeper, to bring the Rangers to within 21-14 with 3:58 left in the third. After Rampart gambled and lost by throwing an incomplete pass on fourth and 8 from its 38, Lewis-Palmer took advantage of the short field.

Seven plays later, Tillotson rolled to his left and found Jonathan Scott open in the corner of the end zone for a 17-yard strike that, with the point after, tied the game with 2.7 seconds left in the third quarter.

With 5:44 left, Oscar Laugesen partially blocked a punt by Rampart's Adrian Bruckner, setting up the Rangers at the Rams 34. On third and 6 from the 13, Brines took a pitch to the right after the play sent Rampart scrambling to the left, and the senior went untouched to the end zone to give his team a 28-21 lead with 3:16 left.

Rampart found its offensive touch on a game-saving, 43-yard drive, set up by a 47-yard kickoff return by Dom Banks. With 1:21 left, Rams quarterback Cameron Hacker flipped a shovel pass to Quincy Marshall, and the junior running back bolted into the end zone to tie the game.

Hacker completed seven of 13 passes in the first half, leading Rampart on three consecutive scoring drives after a failed fake punt on the Rams' first possession. He tossed touchdown passes to Quinn Mahone, Marshall and Donovan Oldham.

But in the second half, Rampart managed only three first downs.

"The kids worked so hard to overcome a shaky start to the season," Rangers coach Tony Ramunno said. "We did a lot of tackling this week. Everyone stepped up."

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