Country Day lets 14-point lead evaporate, falls to Flint Powers 21-14 in D-4 semifinal

By: Mike Moore | Birmingham - Bloomfield Eagle | Published November 21, 2015

 Larry Penson caught a 64-yard touchdown pass on a screen play to get Country Day's offense going. But the Yellowjackets failed to generate much of anything else the rest of the day.

Larry Penson caught a 64-yard touchdown pass on a screen play to get Country Day's offense going. But the Yellowjackets failed to generate much of anything else the rest of the day.

Photo by Donna Agusti

WEST BLOOMFIELD — The snow, the cold and Noah Sargent.

It was a dangerous trifecta the Beverly Hills Detroit Country Day football team faced Saturday afternoon.

One the Yellowjackets never figured out.

For the second year in a row, County Day had its season come to a close in the Division 4 semifinal round, falling to Flint Powers Catholic 21-14 at West Bloomfield High despite leading 14-0 at halftime.

“Really disappointing,” coach Dan MacLean said afterwards. “Really disappointing for our kids. But you have to impact that and do something in the second half to help yourself, and we didn’t do that. It’s bitter. It’s tough for our seniors especially.”

Sargent, the Powers quarterback MacLean called a “playmaker” earlier in the week, certainly lived up to the praise, scoring the game’s final touchdowns on a 1-yard run with just 26 seconds remaining in regulation.

He also passed for a touchdown, had an interception and knocked down a heave to the end zone on Country Day’s final play.

Larry Penson got Country Day on the board late in the first quarter, hauling in a screen pass on third down and then running nearly untouched for a 64-yard touchdown.

On its ensuing possession, Powers fumbled the ball away for the second time in the first quarter, and 43 seconds into the second, Chris Bergin capped a 38-yard drive with a 1-yard touchdown run and the Jackets led 14-0 at halftime.

The rest of the game belonged to Powers.

Peyton Beauchamp hauled in a 38-yard touchdown pass from Sargent halfway through the third, and Reese Morgan scored on a 20-yard run six minutes later.

Sargent converted the two-point play on a run to tie the game at 14-14.

Sargent's one-handed interception in the third quarter led to Morgan's touchdown run.

Battling the wind and constant, heavy snow fall, the teams did very little of anything the entire fourth before Sargent engineered the game-winning drive, connecting on a key third-down conversion with tight end Nick Thompson to set up the 1-yard touchdown run one play later.

"I think with the conditions and the wind and everything in the second half, we were really fishing for some offense,” MacLean said. “We just couldn’t get anything to materialize.”

Snowfall started well before the game, and never let up.

The staff at West Bloomfield was constantly shoveling the sidelines and goal lines, even during play.

Neither team was able to run the ball as effectively as they are accustom to, and both passing games were essentially cancelled out.

“The conditions were the same for both teams,” MacLean said. “They were able to get something done in the second half, and we didn’t. We didn’t do anything to help ourselves.”

Sargent finished the game with 97 yards passing, completing just 5-of-16 passes. But he had the touchdown to Beauchamp and the conversion to Thompson in key moments.

He also rushed for 85 yards on 18 carries.

Powers (11-2) advanced to face Zeeland West (13-0) in the D-4 final at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 27 at Ford Field.

Country Day closes the year 11-2.