After stalling offensively much of the first half, Bellarmine Prep stormed back against Lakes in the second half, and pulled off a 16-14 win when Matthew Philichi nailed a 33-yard field goal with just over a minute left in the game.
Junior running back Nathan Goltermann – who stands at 5-foot-4 and 122 pounds – carried the ball nine times for 38 yards on the Lions’ 12-play, 57-yard drive to set up the game-winner. Goltermann finished with 23 carries for 118 yards.
Despite dominating the first two quarters and having several scoring opportunities, Lakes was only able to take a 7-0 lead at the half – on Caleb Lyons’ six-yard touchdown run late in the first quarter. The Lancers turned the ball over on downs at the Lions’ 26-yard line on their first drive of the game, and fumbled at Bellarmine’s five-yard line on their next possession.
Philichi had a chance to put the Lions on the board midway through the second quarter, but his 43-yard field goal sailed just left. The Lancers then stormed 77 yards in seven plays, but were stopped short on fourth-and-goal, denying them a chance to go up two scores at the break. The Lancers finally added their second score early in the second half, as Xzavier Weston scored on a 26-yard run to cap a 10-play, 86-yard drive. But Goltermann answered with a nine-yard touchdown for the Lions four plays later, after quarterback Lou Millie hit Drew Griffin for a 50-yard completion on 3rd-and-8 to keep the drive alive. Goltermann added a key 29-yard scamper on the Lions’ next possession to set up Millie’s one-yard touchdown. But the extra point was botched, leaving the Lions down 14-13.
After Lyons – who led Lakes with 16 carries for 89 yards – returned the ensuing kickoff to Bellarmine’s 26-yard line, the Lions’ defense stood firm, as Garrett Letts and Nick Dionas came up with back-to-back clutch tackles to snuff out the Lancers’ threat. That set up the final drive, fueled by Goltermann and finished by Philichi’s game-winning boot. Bellarmine quickly ended Lakes’ final chance when Letts intercepted Kemonee Jenkins on the first play of the next drive.