SPRING CREEK — Never say die.
For most of the first quarter Saturday, the Spring Creek football team did everything it could to give away its pivotal home game versus Lowry.
However, games are four quarters and the Spartans owned the last three in a 30-29 come-from-behind victory.
Spring Creek gave up a touchdown on the Buckaroos’ first drive — a 64-yard jaunt — moving the ball on the ground and through the air.
Sophomore Logan Fettic hauled in an 11-yard pass from senior Caden Ricci, followed by another first down with an 11-yard run up the gut by senior Anthony Peterson.
The chains were moved once more with a reception by sophomore Braden Hammargren at the Spartans’ 11.
Ricci set up a 1st-and-goal inside the 1 with a scramble around the left side.
Peterson bulled home for the touchdown, and the PAT was added by Hammargren for a 7-0 lead with 8:15 on the clock.
The Spartans lost the first two kickoffs — fumbling one and never fielding the next — both turnovers leading to Lowry points.
Junior Giovani Sapien stripped the return man on Lowry’s first kickoff and recovered the fumble himself.
From the Spartans’ 20, the ball was moved to the 10 for a first down with a catch by senior Anthony Gildone.
However, the Bucks committed a false start and dropped a slant over the middle.
Sapien picked up seven yards, but a third-down pass was tipped in the end zone by Spring Creek senior Grant Brorby.
Lowry settled for a 21-yard field goal and led 10-0 with 5:35 remaining in the first quarter.
The ensuing kick was never collected and was recovered by Lowry junior Joseph Garcia at the Spring Creek 14.
Senior Will Tournahu dropped a carrier for a loss, but a pass to senior Samuel Roth went for six yards.
On 3rd-and-7, Lowry’s pass was incomplete.
However, on the field goal try Spring Creek was issued a penalty to climbing — actually lifted — and set up 4th-and-2.
Peterson churned his tree trunks for a first down, and Fettic caught a five-yard pass.
The drive was capped with a three-yard touchdown by Peterson — his second of the game — but the PAT was blocked as senior Q Boyd fully extended and slapped the ball back to the holder.
With 3:35 on the clock, the Bucks led 16-0.
When the Spartans desperately needed an answer, they came up with one.
Starting from their own 42 after a return by senior Sam Tomera, Boyd moved the sticks with hard-nosed running for seven and eight yards.
Senior Bear Browne rushed for three but a false start sent Spring Creek backward.
Brorby threw to Boyd down the seam for 15 yards, and a Lowry offside call moved the Spartans the Bucks’ 24.
Boyd carried for nine yards on two tries, and as the teams swapped sides at the end of the quarter — the Spartans cashed in/
On 3rd-and-5 at the 9, Brorby connected with senior Aiden Painter on a corner route for a touchdown.
On the conversion, Brorby dropped a dime on a fade to senior Kyler Lulay — who dropped to some toe-drag swag in the corner.
With 11:13 remaining in the half, the Spartans cut the lead in half at 16-8.
The Bucks responded with a nice drive of their own.
Starting from the 20 after a touchback, Fettic reeled in an 18-yard snag and a comeback for six yards.
Roth caught a three-yard pass and Peterson rushed for two yards and a fresh set of downs.
After on offside, Peterson carried for four yards and Fettic spun free after a screen to the Spring Creek 34.
On 3rd-and-12, a pass to Roth went for nine yards — the drive extended with a hard count as Spring Creek jumped.
Fettic hauled in a 13-yard reception to the Spartans’ 7, and Peterson easily darted through the middle for his third touchdown of the half.
The extra point opened a 23-8 advantage with 5:19 on the clock.
Spring Creek did not wait until the second half to claw back.
Although they were forced to punt, a defensive takeaway turned the momentum of the entire contest.
On 3rd-and-4 from their own 49, the Buckaroos tossed an interception — the pass picked off by senior Kevin Thompson and was taken all the way back to the Lowry 9.
Boyd ran for five or six yards and brought the hometown faithful to life with a three-yard TD.
The conversion was stopped short, but the Spartans sliced the deficit to nine at 24-13 with 1:13 remaining in the half.
To start the third quarter, Spring Creek wasted no time to go big.
Brorby dropped a beautiful deep shot down the left side to Boyd, who hauled in the catch and raced to the Lowry 11 before being tripped up from behind.
The Spartans picked up six yard on two carries but threw incomplete on third down and elected to kick on 4th-and-4, Lulay splitting the uprights with a 22-yard field goal.
With 10:11 in the third, Spring Creek trailed by six at 23-17.
Lulay then picked off a pass as Lowry tried a deep shot down the left sideline, but the Spartans were forced to punt.
From the Lowry 34, the Bucks moved the sticks twice with runs by Ricci and Peterson.
At the Spring Creek 42, Peterson broke a big gain up the middle and attempted to fight for extra yardage but was stripped by Thompson — who pounced on the loose ball at the 20.
However, the drive went nowhere — ending with a sack by senior Aaron Woolsey.
Ricci carried for 11 yards and a first down for Lowry, the chains moved again with a 14-yard carry from Peterson to the Spring Creek 14.
On 3rd-and-5, he drove for seven yards to the Spartans’ 10.
More of the same, Peterson carried twice — the latter going for a two-yard touchdown.
Lowry may have gone to the well one too many times, as the conversion was plugged up and stopped short.
With 2:15 remaining in the third, Spring Creek trailed 29-17.
Once again, the Spartans showed grit and answered fire with fire.
Browne carried for 12 yards, and Brorby ran for another first down to the Lowry 40 with a 12-yard tote.
Thompson took a sweep around the left edge for an 11-yard gain to the 29 and — on 3rd-and-6 — Brorby broke off eight yards for a new set of downs.
On 2nd-and-7, Lulay found a hole in Lowry’s zone and broke off a buttonhook — catching the ball and cutting back across the grain for a 15-yard touchdown.
His extra point brought the Spartans to within five at 29-24 early in the fourth quarter.
Lowry dropped a deep pass, and killed its drive with penalties — punting to the Spring Creek 33.
Spring Creek began its final drive with 8:15 remaining, Lulay moving the chains with a reception on a slant to the Lowry 43.
Browne bulled his way for carries of three, six, four and five yards.
Lulay hauled in another slant for nine yards, and Boyd rushed for four yards and a first down at the Bucks’ 15 with 3:50 on the clock.
Lowry made a tackle for a loss by Gildone and Peterson, senior Layne Welch driving the Spartans back to the 25 with a crucial sack.
However, Brorby scrambled outside the pocket to the left side for 18 yards to the 7 and defensive hold on the initial pass play moved the ball half the distance to the goal.
Boyd made a tough carry and kept his legs moving for a three-yard touchdown, giving Spring Creek a 30-29 lead with 1:48 on the clock.
The two-point try was no good, as Lulay’s defender face-guarded him — legal in college and the NFL but not in high school.
Sapien gave the Bucks a chance with a nice return to the 47, but the first carry went for no gain and a one-handed attempt down the left sideline on a high pass fell incomplete.
Ricci carried up the middle for eight yards but was tackled, setting up 4th-and-2.
A high snap essentially killed the play, a last-ditch effort to recollect the ball and throw a rollout pass hitting the carpet.
Spring Creek overcome a terrible start and made plays when it mattered, coming back from a 23-8 deficit for a 30-29 victory.
Brorby finished 6-for-14 passing for 126 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions.
Boyd led the ground attack with 64 yards on 17 carries and a pair of TDs, caught two balls for 70 yards and blocked an extra point.
Lulay reeled in three passes for 46 yards with a touchdown — also nailing a 22-yard field — and Painter finished with one catch for a 10-yard TD.
Browne totaled 36 rushing yards on eight totes, and Thompson’s only rush went for 11 yards — his 45-plus yard interception return changing the momentum of the contest.