A third-period interception by Fort Hunt's Lonnie Lambert set up a 29-yard field goal by Bruce Peterson and lifted the ninth-ranked Federals past host Lee, 16-13, in a Virginia AA Gunston District game played in deep mud and thick fog last night.
The victory earned Fort Hunt at least a share of the Gunston District title and assured the Federals of a berth in the Northern Region playoffs. Fort Hunt improved its district mark to 4-0, 7-1 overall; Lee dropped to 2-1 in the district, 4-4 overall.
"The most important thing for us was to control the ball in the third period," said Fort Hunt Coach Frank Creneti. "They had pretty well dominated the first half, and we knew that we had to stop (David) Lesser and the little slant pass.
"We walked our (defensive) end back off the line to stop the slant, and we adjusted the splits on our offensive line to force them to change up their defense. The third-period drive when we ate up the clock was as important as anything we did all night."
Trailing, 13-7, Fort Hunt's Jeff Farmer intercepted Tom Forburger's pass early in the third period. The Federals took over at their own 35 with 8:45 left in the period.
Fort Hunt drove 65 yards on 15 plays to even the score. James Funderburke (11 carries for 40 yards) and Darren Belk (11 carries for 33 yards) combined for most of the yardage, although quarterback Bill Turner completed his only pass of the second half on a 10-yard hook pattern to Robby Hensley, to give the Federals a first-and-goal at the Lee five.
A dive by Funderburke pushed the ball to the one, and on the next play, the senior fullback dived behind the block of Al Monroe to tie the score with 1:58 remaining in the third period. Peterson's extra point attempt was blocked.
Lee's next possession was cut short by Lambert's interception at the Lancer 20. The senior linebacker returned it 11 yards to the nine, but Fort Hunt's offense could make no headway, losing three yards on three straight plays. Peterson came on and kicked a 29-yard field goal with 10:32 remaining to give the Federals their first lead of the evening, 16-13.
Lee had two more offensive chances, but a fumble recovery by Fort Hunt's John Howay and a defensive stand keyed by Howay left the Lancers short.
Lee dominated the first half, as Lesser (25 carries for 93 yards) capped consecutive sustained drives with touchdown runs.