Incline football falls in double overtime thriller

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — Incline Village lost a thriller in double overtime against traditional powerhouse on Friday to open its football season.

Pershing County sent the Highlanders home with a loss after booting a short field goal in double overtime to prevail 24-21.

Incline senior Brad Rye, shown in 2019 against Pershing County, scored two touchdowns Friday night. Bill Rozak / Tahoe Daily Tribune

The Highlanders enjoyed a first half advantage when senior co-captain Brad Rye ran for a touchdown and sophomore Nick Suter kicked the extra point for a 7-6 lead in the opening quarter.

Incline recovered a fumble in the second quarter but couldn’t take advantage as both teams’ defenses dominated leaving the Highlanders with a one-point lead at halftime.

Pershing jumped back on top, 14-7, with about 5 minutes left in the third quarter but Incline quickly got even.

Rye exploded for a 60-yard touchdown run and Suter again nailed the extra point to tie the game, 14-14, with about 4 minutes left in the third.

Neither team could get the winning points in the fourth quarter forcing overtime.

Pershing got the ball first and scored a touchdown to take the lead 21-14 putting the pressure on the Highlanders to score.

But Incline got level when senior quarterback, and co-captain, Dylan Cleary found junior Brody Thralls for a 15-yard aerial strike.

In double overtime, Incline went on offense first and got inside the 10-yard line before stalling out without any points.

Incline’s defense stepped up and stopped Pershing short of a touchdown, but the Mustangs kicker hit the game-winning field goal.

The Highlanders (0-1) will return to the field next weekend during its COVID-19 shortened season when they play at Coral Academy of Science in Reno. Kickoff is at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, March 20.

Incline is scheduled to be the visitor in all five games this year.

They play at Yerington at 6 p.m. Friday, March 26, at Battle Mountain at 6 p.m. Saturday, April 3, and at Silver Stage at 11 a.m. Saturday, April 10.