EMORY, Va. – With time expiring in the fourth quarter and overtime looming, junior quarterback Hunter Taylor (Summerville, S.C.) hurled a Hail Mary toward the end zone. Junior wide receiver Max Yates (Abingdon, Va.) was in the perfect position to snag the pass and fall over the goal line, winning the game for Emory & Henry College on Homecoming Saturday. The final five minutes resurrected memories of 1962 and Earl Hawkins' legendary performance against the Generals, as the Wasps scored three touchdowns to bring an emotional conclusion to the game.
The Wasps (4-2, 3-1 ODAC) erased a pair of second half deficits on their way to the 48-42 win over Washington and Lee University (4-2, 3-1 ODAC), dealing the Generals their first Old Dominion Athletic Conference loss of the season.
With its fourth-straight win, E&H moves into a tie with W&L for third place in the league standings behind unbeaten Randolph-Macon College and Bridgewater College.
FINAL SCORE – Emory & Henry 48, Washington and Lee 42
LOCATION – Emory, Virginia
VENUE – Nicewonder Field at Fred Selfe Stadium
RECORDS – Emory & Henry (4-2, 3-1 ODAC); Washington and Lee (4-2, 3-1 ODAC)
How It Happened
- Washington and Lee took a 7-0 lead on the first play from scrimmage as Trey Laughlin hit Montgomery Owen with a 75-yard catch-and-run as just 10 seconds came off the clock. The Generals pushed the first-quarter margin to 14-0 on a 17-yard scamper by Jimmie Johnson.
- Late in the first, E&H got on the board as redshirt freshman linebacker Grayson Overstreet (Moneta, Va.) stepped into the "Wild Wasp" formation and bowled his way three yards to make the score 14-7.
- Midway through the second, W&L extended its lead to 21-7 as Coby Kirkland broke off a 67-yard run for another touchdown.
- The contest seemed to be securely in the hands of the Generals when Riley Bartlett picked off a pass at the 9:56 mark of the third quarter and returned it 23 yards to make the score 28-7.
- Emory & Henry was unfazed as Taylor found senior wide receiver Derrick Yates (Abingdon, Va.) with two touchdowns later in the third (15 yards, one yard) to close the gap to 28-21. The Wasps tied the contest at 28 as time expired in the quarter when sophomore linebacker Ivan Phillips (Kingsport, Tenn.) forced and recovered a fumble and raced down the far sideline 21 yards for a touchdown.
- Washington and Lee answered back with two more rushing scores from Kirkland to cap drives of 65 and 70 yards to make the score 42-28 with 6:24 left in the contest.
- Freshman running back T.J. Tester (Moneta, Va.) got the rally going with a three-yard plunge with 4:54 on the clock. After forcing a three-and-out by the Generals, the Wasps went back to work on a six-play 64-yard strike which saw sophomore wide receiver Jeff Wallace (Abingdon, Va.) catch a four-yard pass from Taylor to tie the contest at 42.
- Emory & Henry forced another punt and found itself with 35 seconds and 80 yards between it and victory. After being sacked on first down, Taylor scampered 17 yards to get thing started. He then hit Derrick Yates with a 13-yard pass and the Wasps were the beneficiary of a targeting penalty on an incomplete pass on the next play.
- With the ball on the W&L 39, and two seconds remaining, Taylor launched the ball toward the end zone for Yates to secure for the score and the victory.
Emory & Henry Individual Leaders
- Taylor threw for 368 yards and four touchdowns on 30-for-47 passing and added 54 yards on the ground. It was the junior's fourth-straight multi-TD game and fourth career contest throwing for at least 300 yards.
- Tester posted his second 100-yard rushing game in as many weeks, finishing with 107 yards and a touchdown.
- Derrick Yates caught 13 passes for 167 yards and two scores while junior wideout Gunner Griffith (Bluff City, Tenn.) had eight receptions for 105 yards.
- Phillips and sophomore defensive back Deonte Geddis (Summerville, S.C.) each had 11 tackles on the day as Phillips forced and recovered a fumble. Overstreet and sophomore defensive back Dalton Wilson (Clinton, Tenn.) added six stops each including a tackle for loss.
Washington and Lee Individual Leaders
- Kirkland led the Generals' offense with three touchdowns on eight carries for 118 yards while Laughlin ran the ball 17 times for 86 yards while throwing for 174 on 7-for-18 passing and a score.
- Owen caught five passes for 143 yards including his first-play 75-yard touchdown.
- Fred Benham led W&L with nine tackles, an interception and another pass defended while Matt Mulligan made eight stops. Bartlett added four tackles to his interception and score.
- Emory & Henry will travel to the opposite end of Interstate 81 next Saturday as it visits Shenandoah University. Kickoff between the Wasps and Hornets is set for 1:00 p.m.