Orchard Park was able to hang on and take down Bennett 23-22 in a battle of squads at the top of the Class AA.
The Quakers made a bold decision late in the fourth quarter. Jack Sharp hit Archie Bartolotti for a 12-yard touchdown with 2:26 remaining in the contest to pull within a point of the Tigers, 22-21.
Instead of settling for an extra point to tie and look toward overtime, head coach Craig Dana sent his offense back on the field. A sharp hit to Bartolotti was good for the game winning two points.
Bennett (4-2) will no doubt leave All High Stadium disappointed with a loss after leading for most of the contest. The Tigers left the locker room with a touchdown lead and immediately extended the margin to 22-7 off a D’Jay Perry kickoff return touchdown.
Sharp responded for the Quakers, scoring on a quarterback keeper. His two point conversion pass to Michael Pataky pulled Orchard Park within seven to set up the junior quarterback’s game winning score.
The Quakers pulled out the victory despite being outgained by 50 yards on offense, 196-146. On the other side, Bennett can likely point to their penalties as one of the biggest factors in their defeat. The Tigers racked up 12 penalties for 130 yards.
With Friday’s win, Orchard Park (5-1) keeps pace with Lancaster atop the Class AA standings. The Quakers take on Clarence next week before hosting the Legends In their regular season finale on October 19.
Bennett will try to bounce back next Saturday against fellow Buffalo Public School Hutch Tech next Saturday, October 13.