KINGWOOD – It’s those darn little things that always seem to come up and bite a rebuilding football program.
Missed blocks, untimely penalties and just plain dumb luck seem to strike at the most inopportune times.
On Friday, it was the little things that caught up — once again — to Preston as it dropped a 14-13 contest to visiting Washington.
“There’s no good loss,” first-year Preston coach Mark Deep said. “I hope this is a building block. I really hope it is. When we come back Monday, we will see if we have a building block.”
Trailing 14-7 with 3:25 left in the game, the Knights (0-5) got a break when Jacob Burns fell on a Washington fumble at the Patriots 21-yard line.
At that time, it seemed like the little things were finally going to go Preston’s way as it took advantage of two Washington penalties, along with a an 8-yard scoring pass from quarterback Trevor Thomas to Dillon Taylor to pull the Knights within one point.
That’s when disaster struck.
Washington’s Isaiah Osafo-mensah came through the line clean and blocked what would have been the tying extra point.
“The young man made a great play,” Washington coach Glen Simpson said. “He worked hard, he believed in himself and he executed.”
Osaf-mensah said it even simpler.
“I just had a mindset to stop the kick,” he said. “I was unblocked, and I ran to block it.”
Deep admitted he had second thoughts about kicking the PAT instead of going for a go-ahead 2-point conversion.
“I’m kicking myself in the butt,” Deep said. “I should have gone for two. But, you know, you can second guess yourself all night. I’m kicking myself– there’s no doubt about it. As soon as it goes wrong, it’s I should have went for 2.”
Preston would not have even been in the contest if it wasn’t for a stingy bend-but-don’t break defense that kept the Patriots off the scoreboard the entire first half. The Knights blocked two field goals, had an interception, and recovered two fumbles.
After a scoreless first half, from both teams, the Patriots (3-4) took little time to put the first points on the board. On the first play from scrimmage, Tyler Meisenzahl took a counter play 58 yards for the game’s first score as he broke several tackles along the way.
Washington scored again on its next possession in the third quarter as it went 83 yards on 13 plays and finished with a 1-yard score from quarterback Rodrigo Delgado. After missing an extra point earlier in the contest, the Patriots opted to go for two points and found paydirt on a run by Delgado.
Preston put its first points on the board two plays later when Thomas found Taylor wide-open behind the defense for a 41-yard score.
Then came the inevitable fourth quarter and another missed opportunity for the winless Knights.
“Of us, it’s just paying attention to detail Monday through Thursday,” Deep said. “Getting your homework done every night on Hudl. If we are going to build it here, we got to do it the right way and we have to continue to do the little things that are going to make us better.”
Preston returns to action on Friday when it hosts unbeaten University.
By ERIC HERTER
1 2 3 4 F
Washington 0 0 14 0 14
Preston 0 0 7 6 13
W – Tyler Meisenzahl 58 run (kick fail)
W – Rodrigo Delgado 1 run (Delgado run)
P – Dillon Taylor 41 pass from Trevor Thomas (Cole Turner kick)
P – Taylor 8 pass from Thomas (kick block)
RUSHING – WASHINGTON: Meisenzahl 11-118 TD, Delgado 31-111 TD, Grant Clark 5-33, Justin Miller 1-0. PRESTON: Ethan Harper 5-11, Thomas 7-17, Shelden Miller 2-8.
PASSING – WASHINGTON: Delgado 4-4-0 61, Austin Sharp 1-6-1 12. PRESTON: Thomas 13-23-0 111 2TDs.
RECEIVING – WASHINGTON: Dylan Painter 3-53, Adel McCray 1-12, Koltin Childress 1-8. PRESTON: Harper 2-5, Dillon Taylor 4-71 2TD, Riley Land 4-13, Mason Sargent 1-3, Miller 2-19.