Three straight touchdowns helped Hazleton Area make it three straight wins.
Down 15 points with less than seven minutes remaining in regulation on the road, the Cougars put together a comeback that produced a 28-21, overtime victory over Dallas Friday night in a non-league football game between ranked Wyoming Valley Conference teams.
Hazleton Area (3-2) entered the game ranked sixth among Big Schools in the Gaughan Auto Store Super Six Power Rankings on NEPAFootball.com. Dallas, the third-ranked Big School, lost in its return from an unplanned weekend off and fell to 2-2.
Matthew Buchman led the comeback with two of the three touchdowns and the game-clinching interception.
Tyler Wolfe did his part, throwing for two touchdowns and a two-point conversion late. He threw both of his touchdowns on fourth downs and got the Cougars out of third- and fourth-and-long situations on the game-tying drive.
Buchman’s 8-yard touchdown on a Wolfe pass that was deflected by a defender with 6:33 left pulled the Cougars within 21-13.
Wolfe hit Matthew Cusatis for a 22-yard touchdown with 1:17 left. He passed to Ryan Matyas for the two-pointer that forced overtime.
Hazleton Area got the ball first in the National Federation 10-Yard Line Tiebreaking Procedure.
Buchman carried it in on the second play and Luke Russo added his second extra-point kick for the 28-21 lead.
The Buchman interception ended the Dallas possession and the game.
Wolfe finished 18-for-28 for 223 yards passing.
The Dallas defense limited Buchman to 35 yards on 16 carries, but he became the game’s leading receiver with 8 catches for 81 yards. He ran it in from a yard out during the second for the only Hazleton Area touchdown of the first three quarters.
Jackson Wydra was 14-for-21 for 172 yards passing and scored the first two Dallas touchdowns on 1-yard runs for a 14-6 halftime lead.
Parker Bolesta led the Dallas ground game with 14 carries for 97 yards, including the 44-yard, third-quarter touchdown that expanded the lead to 15 points.
Jake DelGaudio had a big game for the Dallas defense. He had 10 tackles, including a sack and another for a loss, along with 8 assists and a forced fumble.
Treyvon Corchado had seven tackles, a sack and an interception for Hazleton Area. Matyas had a team-high eight tackles, including one for a loss.
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