The power went out at Christian Recht Field midway through the second quarter of Fairview’s first round playoff game against Chatfield Friday night.
Later, the lights went out on its desperate comeback bid in the fourth.
The No. 19 Chargers surged after the 22-minute delay, but needed a late stop to upset No. 14 Fairview in the Class 5A opening round, 28-20.
Down 28-7, Jordan Rechel had a 7-yard rushing TD with 9 minutes, 2 seconds remaining and made an incredible 35-yard catch on the Knights’ ensuing drive, which was capped off by a short TD run from Ben Holly with 2:25 to go.
Fairview then took over around midfield after a botched fake punt by Chatfield with 1:57 left. Its drive ended at the Chargers’ 13 after it accidentally spiked the ball to stop the clock on fourth down.
Before that, the Chargers had looked squarely in control.
After the power outage, the reigning 4A champs were rolling. They’d forced a punt immediately after the pause and scored twice in the final 33 seconds before halftime to take a two-touchdown lead.
They ran off 28 straight after star linebacker/running back Zach Lewis rushed for his 14th TD of the season with 11:16 left in the second. And it almost wasn’t enough.
A rough opening round loss concluded a stellar season for the Knights, who lost their elite sophomore quarterback Bekkem Kritza to California but responded with a 9-1 regular season and a 5A League 3 title.
Lewis was a big reason why. He crossed 1,000 yards on the ground Friday, finishing with 98 on 21 carries. At the same time, he showed why he’ll continue to be a sought-after linebacker at the next level. Setting up the TD drive, he busted through the Chatfield line on third-and-short, forcing a punt.
Lewis came into the night as the only player in the state with more than 100 tackles and 1,000 yards from scrimmage. He currently has offers from Coastal Carolina and San Diego.
A happier sendoff would have been fitting. Tied at 7, Brock Narva caught a 54-yard touchdown from Jake Jones to cap off a 50-second, 96-yard drive to give Chatfield its first lead.
After an onside kick recovery, Jones had a 1-yard TD rush around the right edge with 5 seconds left in the second and the quarterback threw his third TD of the night on the first possession of the third.
During the previous power delay, fans that’d braved the icy temperatures scrambled for their camera flashlights. The away side chanted over to the home students, who accurately replied “We can’t see you. We can’t see you.”
It was fun in the dark for the Knights. Then nearly a party under the lights.
Chatfield will travel to No. 3 Ralston Valley next week.