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ERWIN — Senior Walker Gliarmis kicked a 42-yard field goal with 11 seconds to go to push the Fike High varsity football team to a thrilling 34-31 victory Friday at Triton.
In moving to 4-2, the 3-A Big East Conference Golden Demons, who trailed 31-28 at halftime, shut out the 3-A Greater Neuse River Conference Hawks (3-2) in the second half.
“That was big. We did enough to get close and our kickers won the game,” said an elated Tom Nelson, the Fike head coach. “We were more physical, got to the ball quicker and did more gang tackling.”
Gliarmis also nailed a 24-yard field goal with 5:10 to play in the game.
The first quarter featured 35 combined points as Fike led 21-14 heading into the second quarter.
“I thought it was going to be an Arena League game!” Nelson said of the early scoring pace.
Senior quarterback Jaelynn Melton had touchdown passes to junior Zach Pittman and senior Brandon Atkinson, the latter for 94 yards with 3:45 to play. Junior Cody Cooper-Speight ran in a TD with 40 seconds left in the quarter to put Fike ahead.
After a Triton field goal in the second quarter, Melton found Atkinson again for a 28-17 Demons lead. However the Hawks scored twice more before the half ended, including TD run by senior Da’John Williams that was set up by a Melton interception.
The only points the rest of the way were Gliarmis’ two field goals. Fike came up with a key fourth-down stop early in the fourth quarter after a Demons fumble gave Triton possession in Fike territory late in the third quarter.
The Demons are off next week before beginning Big East play Oct. 6 at home against Southern Nash.