FOOTBALL: Comeback Kids: Knights shock Cochranton with last-second win

COCHRANTON – Another thriller.

The Eisenhower Knights brought home another win, 29-28, Friday night in Cochranton – their second thriller in a row to improve to 4-1 overall and 4-0 in Region 2.

Down 28-21 with a minute to go in the fourth quarter, the Knights were in an all too familiar spot. With third down and long looming deep in Eisenhower’s zone, senior Rob Wilston handed off the ball to Alex Johnson. The senior found a hole in the Cochranton defense and used the miscommunication to earn a 34-yard run.

After chipping away at both the clock and the yardage, Wilston found Jarrett Johnson in the end zone with a 12-yard pass and 9.4 seconds remaining to bring the Knights within one.

Eisenhower took the chance on the two-point conversion – and win – and Alex Johnson fought his way into the end zone.

“Unbelievably proud of these young guys,” Eisenhower coach Jim Penley said. “There was no quit. We’re making stuff up on that last drive, just throwing stuff together as we’re doing that, and these guys responded every single time.

“That shows you how dedicated they are, they know what’s going on,” said Penley. “To win two games like that on the road against huge rivals that are top seeds on our region, you can’t say enough about that.”

The game was tight from the start. Cochranton opened the scoring with a touchdown and two-point conversion in the first that Eisenhower matched just before the second quarter. Touchdowns were exchanged again, this time with Eisenhower’s extra point from Grant Venman beating Cochranton’s failed two-point conversion to put Ike in the lead 15-14 at halftime.

Trailing 20-14, quarterback Robbie Wilston had his second TD run of the game to open the fourth quarter. Cochranton led again on its fourth touchdown run of the game – and second by Garrett Adams – with 7:39 left.

Penley noted the physicality of Cochranton’s team as a challenge Eisenhower overcame in its victory.

“They were putting a little bit of a thumping on us,” Penley said. “But you know what? There was no quit. We took it down just about as right as we could.”

Ike travels to Cambridge Springs on Friday; Cambridge is also undefeated in the region after a win over Union City on Friday.

“We can’t get over confident,” said junior Jarrett Johnson. “Cambridge is a big team, they’re really physical, we have to keep that in mind.”

Alex Johnson finished with 146 yards rushing and Wilston 80 for Ike, and Wilston added another 84 passing, accounting for three TD’s.

Eisenhower-Cochranton Stats



First Quarter

C-Jamar Moody 11 run, 4:24 (Jesse Staudt run)

E-Rob Wilston 2 run, :36 (Alex Johnson run)

Second Quarter

C-Jacob Yarnell 1 run, 8:56 (2-pt. run fails)

E-Alex Johnson 1 run, :53 (Grant Venman kick)

Third Quarter

C-Garrett Adams 6 run, 10:18 (2 pt. run fails)

Fourth Quarter

E-Wilston 5 run, 11:28 (2 pt. run fails)

C-Adams 13 run, 7:39 (Adams run)

E-Jarrett Johnson 12 pass from Wilston, :9.4 (Alex Johnson run)


Offensive Plays6052

First downs1014

Total Yards320293







RUSHING-E-Alex Johnson 19-146 1 TD, Bryce Garris 1-(-4), Wilston 21-80 2 TD, Carter Farrell 2-14; Adams 27-180 2 TD, Staudt 9-59, Moody 8-30 1 TD, Yarnell 3-4 1 TD, James Groover 1-4, Tyler Buchan 1-(-4).

PASSING-E-Wilston 9-17-0, 84 yards, 1 TD; C-Nate Flawson 1-1-0, 9 yards, Staudt 0-1, Adams 2-2-0, 11 yards.

RECEIVING-E-Alex Johnson 1-0, Jarrett Johnson 4-52 1 TD, Tre Frank 3-14, Garris 2-18; C-Adams 1-9, Moody 1-8, Staudt 1-3.