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LOUISVILLE - There was no doubt in the mind of Devyn Noe.
The sophomore had made that kick a thousand times in practice.
So when Noe was called upon in overtime Friday night, there was no pressure.
With a perfect snap and excellent blocking, Noe booted the ball through the uprights for a 9-6 victory for his Bullitt East Chargers.
The season opener against the host Doss Dragons also gave first-year head coach Darrell Vincent with his first varsity win.
As the Chargers celebrated the win, Vincent also knew that his team had a long way to go to get where it wants to go.
“They stuck together,” Vincent said of his team which struggled on offense. “They played hard and we did some good things.”
On its final play of the first overtime and the ball at the Doss 12, Vincent said he had no doubt that Noe would connect on the final kick. His only concern was whether the young line could provide better protection than it did when an extra point was blocked in the fourth quarter.
“We trust Devyn,” said Vincent. “We knew he would do it.”
Those were the same words expressed by the placekicker.
“I can make this kick,” Noe remembered telling himself. “This is my kick.”
Noe credited the holder, snapper and everyone on the line for the protection.
“This is a great way to start the season,” said Noe.
For the large crowd of Charger fans in attendance, “great” might not be the way they would describe the game. But fantastic might be a better word for the outcome.
Neither offense could get any momentum going.
The only score of the first half came when Rex White intercepted Chase Payne’s pass at the Charger 26 with 3:12 left.
Quarterback Mitchell Cox completed consecutive passes before Joseph Keeylen broke through the line for the nine-yard touchdown with 1:53 left before intermission.
Ronnell Colbert’s extra point kick was blocked.
Bullitt East’s lone scoring drive came early in the fourth quarter.
After its drive stalled, Dylan Lewis’ punt was fumbled by Doss and recovered by Zach Martin on the Charger 25.
Nathan Christmas, a sophomore, replaced the injured Payne at quarterback and gave the team a spark.
On first down, Christmas kept the ball and ran for 25 years. Taylor McMillen followed with a 20-yard gain.
Facing a fourth down at the Dragon 29, Christmas rolled right and found McMillen streaking along the sidelines. The senior walked the tightrope down the sideline and into the end zone with 7:20 left in the game.
The extra point was blocked and the teams were tied at 6-6.
In overtime, Doss had the ball at the 10 with four shots to get a score.
On each play, Cox failed to find an open receiver.
Bullitt East then got its opportunity to win the game.
After the first three running plays by Christmas netted a loss of two yards, it was Noe time.
Vincent called a timeout to make the decision but he said he didn’t remember saying anything to Noe before he went to the right hash mark.
When the kick sailed through the uprights, pandemonium hit.
“It’s good to win that first one,” said Vincent.
Having been in the game for so many years, Vincent said he was used to making decisions during the contest. The only real difference is the work a head coach does prior to the game.
“I couldn’t sleep Wednesday night,” said Vincent.
He would be the first to admit that the Chargers are not yet a fine-tuned machine. The Chargers are younger and smaller than past teams but Vincent likes the competitive spirit.
With only one scrimmage, no summer camp and practices hampered by the heat, Vincent said most teams are behind schedule.
“If we continue to give that kind of effort, we’ll be OK,” said Vincent. “The conditioning work really helps. They were tired at the end but we were still ready to play.”
NEXT GAME - Bullitt East will have its home opener on Friday at 7:30 p.m. when the Jeffersontown Chargers come to Mount Washington. It will be the season-opener for Jeffersontown.