Kamiak rallies in fourth quarter to beat Mount Vernon | FootballMerk scores on 1-yard run to lead Knights to a 27-26 victory
hen Kamiak needed a touchdown, the offense delivered.
Sophomore quarterback Matt Merk scored on a 1-yard touchdown run in the final seconds to help lift the Knights to a 27-26 victory over Mount Vernon in a Wesco 4A football game Friday night at Mount Vernon High School.
Trailing 26-20, Kamiak started what turned out to be the winning drive at its own 20 with about three minutes left in the fourth quarter.
“We had to stay calm the whole time,” Merk said. “I knew that we could get a good drive off of them.”
The 80-yard drive took nearly the entire three minutes and culminated with a fourth-and-1 with time running out. The Knights (1-2 in the league, 2-3 overall) didn’t have any timeouts remaining.
“It was quite a gut check,” Kamiak coach Dan Mack said. “It was a hard-fought victory.”
Kamiak junior kicker Trevor Vallins kicked the extra point for the win.
Friday night’s win snapped the Knights’ three-game losing streak.
“It was nice to get a win,” Merk said.
Earlier, Merk ran for another 1-yard touchdown and threw scoring passes of 15 yards to junior running back Hiram Grayson and 85 yards to senior running back Josh Binda.
Kamiak finished with 406 yards of total offense. Merk completed 19 of 26 passes for 296 yards.
“He’s improving every game and this was by far one of his best games,” Mack said of Merk.
Binda caught 10 passes for 159 yards and rushed for 67 yards on 18 carries.
Kamiak looks for its second league win against Jackson at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 7 at Goddard Stadium.
Prior to the Mount Vernon game, the two teams met on the field and the players embraced one another in a show of support for both schools, which have been dealing with the loss of life in two recent shootings.
A Mount Vernon sophomore was one of five people killed in a shooting at the Cascade Mall in Burlington on Sept. 23. Three Kamiak graduates were shot and killed at a party on July 30.
“It was a very sobering night,” Mack said.
The Kamiak players wore green tape on their wrists in a show of support for the Bulldogs.
The Knights were glad to have had the opportunity to have a moment with their opponents before the game.
“We felt we should combine the two teams because we share the same sadness,” Merk said. “We both had love throughout the football team. We wanted to show that we cared and that we both feel the same thing.”