Bandon’s young football team picked up a huge win Friday and now is in the middle of the playoff race for the Sunset Conference.
The Tigers host Reedsport in a huge homecoming game this week after their 30-27 win at Toledo improved their season record to 2-0.
“I think this is going to do great things for our young kids,” Bandon coach Aaron Freitag said.
Bandon led most of the game but had to come from behind late after Toledo scored a touchdown midway through the fourth quarter to go in front 27-22.
Bandon got a 38-yard touchdown pass from Braydon Freitag to Donavin Phommaphat, the second scoring connection of the game between the two, with 2:42 to go and then held on when Toledo missed a field goal on the final play.
Coming from behind in dramatic fashion can be a big emotional boost for the team, Aaron Freitag said.
“It will be great for their confidence,” he said. “It was a good growing experience for everybody.”
Braydon Freitag’s first touchdown pass to Phommaphat four minutes into the game gave Bandon an early 8-0 lead. Freitag then scored on a QB keeper and the Tigers led 14-7 at the half after Toledo’s first score.
Toledo pulled within a point of the Tigers early in the third quarter, but Bandon blocked the extra point, leaving the score 14-13.
Jack Davis had a 10-yard run for the Tigers and after Bandon’s two-point conversion, the lead was 22-13.
But Toledo got two scores in the fourth quarter, setting up the dramatic finish.
Bandon is tied with Gold Beach for first place at 2-0 in league play and the Tigers are 11th in the Class 2A power rankings. Each of the six leagues gets two teams in the Class 2A playoffs, and four more spots go to the four highest-ranked teams that aren’t among the two automatic qualifiers for their leagues.
In Reedsport, the Tigers will face a physical, veteran team. The Brave suffered their league loss to Gold Beach and shared the league title last fall with Gold Beach and Toledo.
A win Friday could set the Tigers up for a showdown with Gold Beach on the final night of the regular season. The Panthers still have to play Toledo on Friday and Waldport next week. Bandon’s game next week is with winless Myrtle Point, which will be a good opportunity for a victory.