Prep football: Chambers’ huge night helps Carlisle edge Oakwood in OT

Franklin’s Kyle Rickard (3) moves in to make a tackle on Carlisle’s D.J. Chambers on Aug. 25 during the visiting Wildcats’ 47-14 triumph at Laughlin Field. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO BY JOHN CUMMINGS

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Franklin’s Kyle Rickard (3) moves in to make a tackle on Carlisle’s D.J. Chambers on Aug. 25 during the visiting Wildcats’ 47-14 triumph at Laughlin Field. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO BY JOHN CUMMINGS

It was a Friday night to remember at Carlisle High School.

The Indians pulled off a 43-41 overtime football victory over visiting Oakwood and did it in big-play fashion, powered by D.J. Chambers’ two kickoff returns for touchdowns.

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“It was one of the more fun and crazy games that I’ve been a part of, that’s for sure,” Carlisle coach Mike Brown said. “I felt it was two pretty good teams battling it out, two teams that just give relentless effort.

“That was such an important game for us. We play a lot of juniors and seniors, but coming into this year, we didn’t have a lot of experience. I think a win like that can give our guys who are playing most of the snaps the confidence to say, ‘Hey, I’m starting to figure this out. We can continue to get better and play good football.’ ”

Chambers, a senior speedster, tallied touchdowns on 94- and 84-yard kickoff returns for the Indians (2-1). He also scored on a 60-yard pass from Jake Moore in the final minute of regulation — completing a 98-yard drive — to force OT.

It was the first time in Chambers’ career that he took two kickoffs back for touchdowns in the same game.

Why didn’t the Lumberjacks simply kick the ball away from Chambers?

“We try to be creative in a way that teams might not know where he’s going to be,” Brown said. “If it’s within a certain sphere of D.J., he’s going to pick it up no matter what. It’s on us to try to get him the ball back there somewhere because he’s so special on returns.”

In extra time, Spencer Mays scored on a 2-yard run and then ran for the conversion to put Carlisle up 43-35. Brown originally sent out the extra-point team after the TD, but decided to go for two after an offsides penalty on Oakwood put the ball inside the 2-yard line.

“I wouldn’t say it was easy, but it was obvious he got in,” Brown said of the conversion. “It didn’t seem like anything came very easy.”

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Oakwood (2-1) fought right back with a 22-yard touchdown toss from Brian Erbe to Tommy Lunne, but Erbe couldn’t connect on a conversion pass into the end zone.

“They rolled out and we got some nice pressure from the back side, so I don’t know if he was feeling that,” Brown said. “Our D-end Zach Jewell did a great job of trying to get in his way and getting his hands up. The pass was just a little off and went our way.”

Moore threw for 154 yards and ran for a touchdown for Carlisle, which got outgained 392-293 in yardage. Mays ripped the ball away from a Lumberjack runner and returned it for a TD in the first period.

The Indians trailed 28-21 at halftime.

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“We made some adjustments in the second half defensively and kind of stopped the bleeding, and our offense started controlling the ball a little more,” Brown said. “Once we got it into overtime, we felt that we needed to take some chances so we could end the game.”

Erbe had a monster game for Oakwood, completing 24 of 35 passes for 330 yards and five touchdowns.

Carlisle begins Southwestern Buckeye League Buckeye Division play at home against Waynesville (0-3) next Friday.

Oakwood 14-14-7-0-6—41

Carlisle 14-7-7-7-8—43

O: Mauricio Herringer 2 run (Matt Sanford kick)

C: D.J. Chambers 94 kickoff return (Ande Allison kick)

O: Brendan Talarczyk 9 pass from Brian Erbe (Sanford kick)

C: Spencer Mays 6 fumble return (Allison kick)

O: Dylan Caplette 12 pass from Erbe (Allison kick)

C: Chambers 84 kickoff return (Allison kick)

O: Jake Sargent 28 pass from Erbe (Sanford kick)

C: Jake Moore 3 run (Allison kick)

O: Talarcyzk 34 pass from Erbe (Sanford kick)

C: Chambers 60 pass from Moore (Allison kick)

C: Mays 2 run (Mays run)

O: Tommy Lunne 22 pass from Erbe (Pass failed)

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