Crimsons defeat Ballard Bruins in overtime

Reece Gunther

The Manual Crimsons (3-1) defeated the Ballard Bruins (2-3) 21-20 during overtime in a highly contested game Friday night at the Ballard Stadium.

The win came during the first round of the overtime penalty where Manual scored a touchdown and made a successful point-after-touchdown (PAT) kick whereas Ballard scored a touchdown but had an unsuccessful PAT kick.

First Quarter

Both Manual and Ballard struggled to move the ball offensively in the first quarter. Ballard received the first kick but soon punted the ball to Manual, who eventually punted the ball back to Ballard. This continued through the first quarter.

All the while, two injury timeouts occurred during the first quarter. Manual’s only offensive breakthrough was when Aidan Robbins (#7, 12) carried the ball to the end zone, however, a flag was called on the play and the run didn’t count.

“This was easily the toughest game we played all year, but we came out with a victory,” Robbins said.

Second Quarter

Once again, Manual and Ballard punted the ball back and forth three times for each team during most of the duration of the second quarter.

Because of these punts, Ballard’s third one put them quite close to the Manual end zone setting up Rashad Bishop (#14) to catch a pass and score a touchdown. This made the score 7-0 after a successful kick.

The lack of offensive plays can be attributed to the strong Manual and Ballard defenses who blocked passes and carries, respectively.

Third Quarter

Manual received the second-half kickoff, however, were unable to move it down the field and punted to Ballard. This allowed Ballard’s Isaiah Downing (#2) to score another touchdown making the score 14-0.

Manual’s offense seemed to become effective later in the third quarter, beginning with DeAaron Robinson’s (#20, 11) 26-yard carry to put Manual in the red zone. This allowed Ramont Townsend (#26, 10) to run in for a touchdown, making the score 14-7.

Soon after the kickoff following that touchdown, Ballard fumbled the ball and Manual’s Eli Blakey (#14, 10) recovered it just 17 yards away from the goal line. However, Manual then tried to pass the ball which was intercepted by Ballard’s Downing.

Ballard didn’t get very far with the intercepted ball without fumbling it themselves, allowing Manual’s Jawaun Northington (#34, 9) to recover it and run in for a touchdown, making an even score of 14-14.

“I just went for the ball and when I realized I actually had it I just ran,” Northington said. “We played a great football team but in the end, we just came out on top.”

Fourth Quarter

Towards the beginning of the quarter, Manual recovered another fumbled Ballard ball. Many of the fumbles throughout the game occurred during the snapback where the quarterback either dropped the ball or didn’t catch the actual snap.

Manual had a minor injury timeout that injured one of the running backs, hindering the offense from moving the ball down the field.


Per the KHSAA football overtime procedures, when both teams have the same score at the end of the game, both teams will be given an opportunity to score points in four downs from the 10-yard-line.

Manual carried the ball to the four-yard-line during the first and second downs. During the second down, a Ballard player had a severe neck injury and the game was put on hold for about half an hour while an ambulance removed him from the field and transported to the hospital.

Following the injury timeout, Robbins was able to run in four yards to score a touchdown for the Crimsons. Patrick Holdener (#91, 10) made the successful PAT kick, making the score 21-14.

“They knew I was fast, they knew I could move to the outside and they gave me the sweep so I just had to do what I did,” Robbins said.

Ballard scored a touchdown on their first down through a pass, however, Ballard’s PAT kick had a bad snap, causing the placekicker to send it straight up in the air rather than towards the goal.

“We always tell our kids to never quit fighting and never quit going. There are four quarters and you’ve just got to keep going, and that’s what we did,” Scott Carmony, Manual’s head coach said.

Last year, Manual beat Ballard by just one point also, and the deciding point was acquired on a kick last year as well.

Manual will face Seneca (0-4) in the homecoming game next week at Manual Stadium at 7:30 p.m.