Lewiston rallies in 4th, holds back Moscow late to win

Tribune/Rebecca NobleLewiston’s Cruz Hepburn (right) tries to get past Moscow’s Logan Shears. Hepburn had the game-winning touchdown Friday for the Bengals.

Lewiston defensive backs Wade Ahlers and Garrett Creviston teamed up to thwart what would have been a game-winning touchdown pass for Moscow and the Bengals beat the Bears 28-24 on Friday at Bengal Field.

With no time on the clock, Moscow receiver Ben Postell almost secured a 38-yard touchdown reception in the front lefthand side of the end zone, but Creviston prevented him from securing it long enough for Ahlers to punch it out of Postell’s hands.

“(Postell) caught it first,” Creviston said. “But then I grabbed his arm and Wade punched the ball out.”

Added Ahlers, “Like Garrett said, (Postell) grabbed it out of the air, Garrett did a good job of wrapping him up and I just saw that ball and got my hand in there and knocked it out.”

Lewiston quarterback Kash Lang threw two touchdown passes and Cruz Hepburn ran for two scores, the last of which gave the Bengals their first lead of the second half with 59 seconds left. They’d trailed by 10 early in the fourth quarter.

Setting up Hepburn’s go-ahead run from 3 yards out, the Bengals converted two fourth downs on their final drive after getting the ball with 4:42 left at their own 25-yard line.

The first of those fourth-down conversions for the Bengals saw receiver Isaiah Walker dive to pull in a 28-yard pass with his team needing 7 yards to retain possession. Walker reeled that in at Moscow’s 38.

Before that play, Walker told his quarterback to look for him in the middle of the field.

“I knew we were going to complete that right off the bat,” Walker said. “It was a low ball, but I knew I could make that play. I’ve been making it in practice and Kash can trust me.”

Three plays later, the Bengals faced another fourth down. They lined up to go for it, but the Bears jumped offsides to spot Lewiston a first down at the Moscow 26 with 1:56 remaining.

After that penalty, Hepburn ran 16 yards to set up a first-and-goal and Jesse Ady caught a 7-yard pass to bring the Bengals to the Bears 3 with 1:26 to go. Hepburn scored on the next play.

“It doesn’t come down to that (final) play,” Moscow coach Phil Helbling said, alluding to his team’s last-second Hail Mary. “We should never have put ourselves in that situation.

“We had opportunities to ice that game, to go up 17 points, and just finish the game. And we let them hang around and that’s what I told the guys: ‘Too many mistakes, too many penalties in critical situations.’ And we played not to lose instead of playing to win.”

Moscow quarterback Chad Redinger scored three touchdowns, all in the first half. Moscow last beat Lewiston in 2014.

Moscow 7 14 3 0—24

Lewiston 7 7 0 14—28

Lewiston — Cruz Hepburn 9 run (Harrison Smith kick)

Moscow — Chad Redinger 21 run (Ben Postell kick)

Moscow — Redinger 15 run (Postell kick)

Lewiston — Devin Zagelow 6 pass from Kash Lang (Smith kick)

Moscow — Jonah Elliss 4 pass from Redinger (Postell kick)

Moscow — Postell 38 field goal

Lewiston — Jesse Ady 7 pass from Lang (Smith kick)

Lewiston — Hepburn 3 run (Smith kick)

Edelman may be contacted at (208) 848-2277 or bedelman@lmtribune.com.

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