Thiel comes back in fourth quarter to defeat Waynesburg, 50-42

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GREENVILLE, Pa. – The Thiel Tomcats scored 13 unanswered fourth quarter points Saturday night to earn a 50-42 comeback win over the Waynesburg Yellow Jackets at The Graveyard. 

In a game that featured six lead changes and 1,110 yards of offense, it was the Tomcats who had the last laugh.

Trailing 42-37 after Mike Ryhal cashed in on a 20-yard field goal early in the fourth frame, the Tomcats needed just one play to score what would turn out to be the game-winning touchdown when senior quarterback Ryan Radke threw a 44-yard bomb to DeShawon Bracy. The Tomcats' two-point try failed, but they held a 43-42 lead.

Radke later connected with Eugene Bailey on another long touchdown pass, this one a 43-yarder, to close out scoring with less than eight minutes remaining in regulation.

The night belonged to Bracy and Radke.

Bracy caught eight passes, two of which were touchdown catches, for 250 yards. His 250 receiving yards were the fourth most in a single game in Presidents' Athletic Conference (PAC) history.

Radke completed 17-of-27 passes for 391 yards with three touchdown strikes. He also ran for 163 yards and scored three touchdowns on 18 carries. With his 391 yards in the air, Radke became Thiel's all-time career leader in passing yards (6,018), surpassing Willie Bova (5,682).

Waynesburg scored on the opening drive of the game, but Radke countered with a five-yard touchdown run on Thiel's first possession. Radke gave the Tomcats the lead 14-7 late in the first quarter when he scored on an 18-yard run.

After the Yellow Jackets tied up the game, Thiel reclaimed the lead 21-14 when Bracy took a 60-yard pass from Radke to the house.

Waynesburg forced another tie with less than four minutes remaining in the first half, but Chris Rosales put the Tomcats back on top 24-21 on a 23-yard field goal with 50 seconds remaining before halftime. However, Waynesburg took a 29-24 lead into the locker room at halftime after Kevin Barnes scored a touchdown on a 16-yard pass from Tyler Perone.

The Yellow Jackets took their largest lead in the game, 36-24, when Whitney White scored on a two-yard run with 10:54 remaining in the third quarter. The Tomcats counter-punched when Nick Barca scored a touchdown on a 12-yard run.

Ryhal booted a 30-yard field goal to give the Yellow Jackets a 39-30 lead with 6:17 left in the third stanza. The Tomcats cut the lead down to two points, 39-37, late in the third when Radke scored on a 13-yard run.

Ryhal extended Waynesburg's lead to 42-37 early in the fourth quarter, but the Tomcats secured the win behind Radke's unanswered touchdown passes to Bracy and Bailey.

Waynesburg's Perone completed 26-of-51 passes for 401 yards. He threw two touchdown passes and two interceptions. Mitch Kendra led the Yellow Jackets with 143 yards receiving while Kevin Barnes caught six passes for 120 yards.

Linebackers Tyron Bynum and Jake Elk led the Tomcats with 11 and 10 tackles, respectively. Lloyd Meeks and Randy Groves each intercepted one pass, and the Tomcats combined for three sacks on the night.

The Tomcats will host the No. 13-ranked Thomas More Saints Saturday at Alumni Stadium. The PAC game is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m.

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