FOOTBALL: Minster wins thriller over Versailles, 20-14

VERSAILLES — Minster quarterback Adam Niemeyer connected with Ethan Wolf on a five-yard touchdown with 31 seconds left in the game to give Minster a thrilling 20-14 win over Versailles on Friday night.

Minster got the ball with 1:39 left in the game and Niemeyer led the Wildcats down the field for the game-winning drive that boosts Minster’s chances of a home playoff game in Week 11.

Driving and tied 14-14, Minster didn’t settle for a game-winning field goal attempt.

Minster wideout Troy Kauffman said the Wildcats didn’t want to leave anything to chance.

“I think if anyone knows our team we are all really gutsy and we like risk. Its kind of how we are,” Minster wide receiver Troy Kauffman said. “In the back of your mind you are thinking field goal we got Devon (Poeppelman) we know we can make it but the other half is like ‘Lets just show everyone we can do it.’”

Earlier in the quarter, Niemeyer ran in from from one yard out on fourth and goal to tie the game at 14-14.

Minster improved to 7-2 overall and 5-2 in the MAC. Versailles fell to 5-4 on the season and 4-3 in the conference.

Minster trailed 14-7 at the half, but they scored 20 unanswered points to pull out the stunning victory.

“That was a very great half of football,” said Kauffman. “I can’t believe how everyone came together like that. I told everyone at halftime that we needed to come together, that we weren’t out yet.”

The first quarter and early second quarter the home team capitalized off Minster penalties and a turnover.

Versailles’ Kyle Dieringer broke loose on a 46-yard run in the first quarter to set up a Nick Campbell to  Damien Richard one-yard touchdown pass. The extra point was good by Chad Winner and the home team cracked the scoreboard first at the 3:24 mark of the first quarter.

The Tigers converted after getting a short 27-yard field to play with in the second quarter.  Rutschilling ran 22-yards into the end zone for another Tigers touchdown. Winner’s extra point was good and Versailles took a 14-0 lead at the 10:55 mark of the second quarter.

Niemeyer found Kauffman on a 24-yard touchdown pass to crack the scoreboard at the 7:33 mark of the second quarter.

Poeppelman’s extra point was good and the Wildcats were within reach of the Tigers.

“I think that at the end of the half we shut them down and that helped,” Kauffman said.

The Tigers went into the locker room with a 14-7 advantage.

Minster started with the ball the second half but didnt have it for long as Niemeyer’s pass was intercepted by Damien Richard.

Prater Otting, Ethan Wolf and James Borges stepped it up on defense and made a defensive stop and gave the Wildcats all the momentum for the final push of the game.

After a 34-yard pass from Niemeyer to Poeppelman and another 14-yard pass to Poeppelman the Wildcats had good field position. Niemeyer found Wolf and the Wildcats picked up a first down. On fourth-and-goal Niemeyer converted and ran one-yard into the endzone to tie the game with 7:12 left.

Minster had the chance to take the lead after getting the ball back after the Tigers went a quick three and out but Niemeyer was sacked by Brandon Christian and Dominic Richard on third and long.

Borges stopped Versailles from taking the lead as he sacked Campbell. The Wildcats got the ball back with 1:39 left in the game - looking to score. Shultz picked up a Wildcats first down and brought the ball down to the Tigers 25-yard line, setting up the last-second heroics.