HOWARD — One week after suffering their first loss of the season, the Oswego Indians needed a fourth-quarter rally to avoid a second straight setback.
Down by as much as 14 points in the first half, the Indians got a 75-yard touchdown run from Jace Wilson to cap off a 48-44 come-from-behind victory over West Elk in an Eight Man I-District 1 matchup on Sept. 28 at Pat Simmons Stadium.
Wilson proved to be a force for the Indians as he carried the ball 20 times for 278 yards and six touchdowns. The junior running back also had one catch for 29 yards and another score.
His performance helped push Oswego to 4-1 overall this season, including 1-1 in district play. The Indians were coming off a heartbreaking 38-34 home loss to Sedan one week earlier — its first setback of the 2018 campaign. OHS will face another tough challenge on Oct. 5 when it entertains Central-Burden in a key District 1 matchup. The Raiders are 3-2 overall and 2-0 in district play following a 56-6 home win over Flinthills.
Meanwhile, West Elk — the defending champion of District 1 — has hit a rough patch with four straight losses to fall to 1-4 overall and 0-2 in district play. This is the longest losing streak in the program since dropping four in a row during the 2012 campaign. The Patriots will try to put an end to that skid when it travels to Cedar Vale/Dexter. The Spartans are 4-1 overall and 2-0 in the district following a 64-32 victory at Sedan.
WEHS led for much of its homecoming matchup against Oswego. In fact, the Patriots had leads of 14-0 after one quarter, 30-20 at the intermission and 36-34 at the end of three quarters.
In the final period, West Elk re-established a double-digit lead at 44-34 following a 28-yard scoring strike from Tim Whetstone to Codie Cannon, and Cannon’s ensuing conversion run.
Oswego came back, though, as Wilson went into the end zone from 10 yards out. Isaac Elliot added the conversion run to get the Indians back within two at 44-42.
Midway through the fourth quarter, West Elk was knocking on the doorstep of another score and had a chance to push the margin back into double digits. That’s when the Patriots fumbled the ball away inside the 10-yard line.
Within the blink of an eye, momentum quickly swung towards the Oswego sideline, and the Indians made the Patriots pay in a big way. On the next play from scrimmage, Wilson broke loose for a 75-yard scramble for the end zone that gave the visitors a four-point lead.
West Elk still had one last chance to pull off the victory. Instead, with a little more than two minutes remaining, the Patriots tossed an interception. Oswego would eventually run out the remainder of the clock to escape with the victory.
The Indians racked up 414 total yards, with 328 of that coming on the ground. The Patriots finished the game with 301 total yards, including a balanced attack of 163 on the ground and 138 through the air.