Big plays lift Roncalli past Greenwood in southside clash

In a game that promised and delivered smash-mouth football at its best, it was the twists and tricks that made the difference.

Class 4A No. 3 Roncalli used a school-record 99-yard kickoff return and a touchdown pass from a reserve running back to pull away from host No. 5 Greenwood 35-14 in a sectional semifinal Friday night.

With the victory, the Rebels (9-2) will play at Cathedral (6-5) next Friday for the sectional title.

Roncalli effectively contained the Woodmen’s high-scoring offense and moved the ball consistently on the ground itself, but it was an unexpected turn that switched momentum for good.

After Greenwood launched a 74-yard drive to tie the score 7-all on a 30-yard run by quarterback Ben Heller with just over a minute left in the first half, the capacity crowd was on its feet in celebration.

Before they had a chance to sit down, the Rebels answered.

Senior Danny Ferry took Griffin Oakes’ kickoff inside the 1, found a wedge at the 25 and raced untouched 99 yards down the left sideline to make it 14-7 at halftime.

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