Plainsmen Fall Short at Natrona, 14-13
Two blocked kicks kept the Laramie Plainsmen from their first win of the season Friday night in Casper. Laramie lost 14-13 to the Natrona County Mustangs.
Blake Moore’s potential game-winning 34 yard field goal with 42 seconds left was blocked after a low snap that skidded on the ground to holder Taylor Dodd. The kick barely got off the ground.
Plainsmen head coach Chuck Syverson was frustrated about missed opportunities after the game.
"I felt like we left six touchdowns on the field tonight (Friday). Overthrows; just not getting the ball where it needs to go right now, and we had a lot of guys open, wide open, down the field with no one even close to 'em that if we get the ball to those guys, I think we score, at least three more touchdowns, if not more."
Laramie (0-3) began the drive at their own 20-yard line with 4:32 left. They drove 15 plays to the Mustangs’ 17-yard line before they lined up for the field goal attempt. The drive included a pair of fourth down conversions. Dodd connected with McCade Johnson three times and Conor Beeston four times during the march.
Natrona (1-2) took a knee after the blocked kick to end the game and win their 11th straight game over LHS.
The Plainsmen nearly tied the game after mistake by the Mustangs punter. A low snap sent the punter to a knee to field the ball. He was marked down at that point. Laramie took over at the NC 14-yard line. Two plays later, Dodd ran it in from six yards out. The point-after-touchdown was blocked, which preserved a 14-13 lead by Natrona.
It was 7-6 Laramie at half. Natrona settled for two short field goals on their second and third drives. They missed a third attempt from 40-yards out. The Plainsmen scored with 1:51 left in the half. Dodd hit Beeston from 21 yards out. The drive was highlighted by a 50-yard pass to Jason Upton on third down and 18 yards to go.
Natrona took the lead on the first play of the fourth quarter. Jesse Harshman found Riley Shepperson with 10-yard TD pass. A two-point conversion run had NC up 14-7 with 11:55 remaining.
Laramie finished with only 225 yards on offense and had the ball only 19 minutes. Dodd was 16-of-34 for 170 yards and a touchdown. He ran it 13 times for 40 yards. Beeston had eight grabs for 74 yards and the score.
The Mustangs had 255 yards total offense. They controlled the clock with 29 minutes in time of possession. Brett Brenton ran for 104 yards on 24 carries and added six catches for 99 yards. Harshman went 12-for-20 for 148 yards a TD and an interception.
Laramie looks for its first win on the road in week 3. They head to Evanston to face the winless Red Devils. Kick-off is at 6 p.m.