Latroy Askew and Jay Medina stopped quarterback Sean Scales a yard short on a two-point conversion try with 1:30 left in the game as Gar-Field held off visiting Woodbridge, 21-20, last night in the first round of the Northwest Region playoffs.
The Indians, who blanked Woodbridge by 30-0 last week, will play host to Fauquier in the region final next Friday at 8 p.m.
Gar-Field, which opened up a 21-0 lead midway through the second quarter, appeared to have the game in hand with less than three minutes to play after winning a fourth-quarter punting duel. But Scales, who completed 10 of 25 attempts for 186 yards, directed a furious rally starting from the Vikings 23.
Scales completed three straight passes to Paul Harris for a total of 43 yards. After a couple of incompletions, Scales lobbed a 35-yard pass to Terrence Harrelson, who beat his man in the left corner of the end zone. Askew and Medina then made the game-saving tackle.
"I expected this game to be very tight, just like it was," Askew said. "Both teams score a lot of points, but our defense stopped them in the final minutes."
Askew, a senior tailback, scored all three of Gar-Field's first-half touchdowns on short runs. He also carried the ball 16 times in the second half as Gar-Field consumed the majority of the third quarter with a 15-play drive that ended with a missed field goal attempt.
"It was an ominous load that I had to take," said Askew, who finished with 111 yards on 25 carries. "I did my best and so did the offensive line."
Woodbridge got back in the game with a touchdown late in the second quarter and a score on its initial possession of the third period. Scales pushed in from one yard out to cap the nine-play, 51-yard drive with 6:56 left to make it 21-14.
"This was the way it was supposed to be last week," said Gar-Field Coach Chuck White. "When we had a 21-0 lead we were still making adjustments because you never know what Scales might do."