OAK HILL – An exciting see-saw battle between the Oak Hill Oaks and the Northwest Mohawks came down to the wire Friday night.

Oak Hill’s Braylon Howell scored the go-ahead touchdown with 40-seconds left to give the Oaks its first win of the season, 21-14, over Northwest on homecoming night at Davis Stadium.

It was the second of two touchdowns Howell scored in the contest as he finished with 153 rushing yards.

It was also a special evening for his sister Baylee Howell. During halftime activities, she was crowned the 2021 Homecoming Queen.

With the win, Oak Hill improved to 1-3 overall, while Northwest suffered its third loss to fall to 1-3.

After the kickoff, Northwest got the ball with 45 seconds left, but Oak Hill’s Aiden Hall, Evan Fisher, and Aiden Ford came up with consecutive sacks to end the game.

Oak Hill head coach Paul Carver said he and the coaching staff had decided on its final drive that overtime was not an option.

“We were going to win the football game, even if it meant kicking a field goal,” said Carver. “We have done that before in the last couple of years. We put the ball in the middle, and it is a short kick as short as an extra point.”

The Mohawks established a drive in the first quarter before disaster struck, as they fumbled and Oak Hill’s Dylan Venegas alertly recovered the ball at the eight-yard line.

The first quarter ended in a scoreless tie.

Northwest had another costly turnover that ended a drive in the second quarter, as Evan Fisher pounced on a loose ball at the Oak Hill 27.

Coach Carver was pleased with the defense being there all night and coming up with the big plays when they needed them.

“We had a lot of sacks tonight, and it helped us. We were able to strip the ball”, said Carver. “When you are playing Northwest, it is hard to figure out who has the football.

“Our guys were there. They read their keys and did a good job. I think that shows a lot of growth for our team," We saw that from our younger kids, and I thought our experienced kids showed a lot of leadership tonight.”

Northwest broke the scoring drought in the second quarter on a seven-yard touchdown run by Tanner Bolin to make it 7-0 with 5:56 left.

Unfazed, Oak Hill wasted little time knotting the score on its next possession. They struck back on their first play from scrimmage when Howell broke loose on a 63-yard touchdown run tie the game, 7-all.

The scoring play came with 5:46 remaining.

In the third quarter, the Oaks had a 67-yard drive to take a 14-7 lead. Aidan Hall finished it with a three-yard touchdown run with 6:10 left.

Hall had a good night, garnering 51 yards on 10 carries. He also had two quarterback sacks on defense.

The scoring drive was aided by a 25-yard run by Hall and a 13-yard pass and catch from Darrick Boggs to Nate Clutters.

Boggs completed 9 of 14 passes for 65 yards, while Clutters had three receptions for 25 yards.

In the final 12-minutes, what worked in Oak Hill's favor all night went against them.

Northwest recovered an Oak Hill fumble and Austin Newman scored to tie the game on a 21-yard touchdown run with 5:26 left.

But the Oaks pulled out the win on Howell's touchdown run late.

“We had a big crowd tonight,” said Carver. “It’s always good to win on homecoming night. The kids will have fun this weekend, and we will get back to work on Monday.”

Overall, the Oaks had 12 first downs, while Northwest had 15.

After a three-game homestand, the Oaks will travel to Nelsonville-York next Friday.