POPLAR GROVE – Mike Kuhn fought off a North Boone defender, caught the pass from Griffin McNeal and got into the corner of the end zone.
Kuhn’s touchdown reception gave Genoa-Kingston a two-score lead, and a late Vikings touchdown wasn’t enough as the Cogs were able to run out the clock after recovering an onside kick in a 28-23 victory.
With the win, Genoa-Kingston (4-3, 4-0 Big Northern East) is one win away from playoff eligibility and still controls its own destiny for a conference title.
The Cogs had plenty of help from two running backs, Eli Thurlby and Sal Lopez, on Friday night. Thurlby had a team-high 101 yards on 13 carries, and Lopez carried the ball 21 times for 85 yards.
“It’s good on any offense, whatever you’ve got. You can’t just have one guy you go to, eventually it’s going to catch up to you,” G-K coach Travis Frederick said after the win.
Lopez got the scoring started, running in from three yards out at the end of the first quarter for the only score of the period. Thurlby had a 9-yard touchdown run in the second quarter after a long interception return by senior Matt Wojdyla.
The Vikings got on the board with a 23-yard field goal by Caleb Boehmke after a nice goal-line stand by G-K. The Cogs responded with a 4-yard touchdown run by Lopez, and North Boone ended the first-half scoring with a 10-yard touchdown run by quarterback Nathan Bodey.
North Boone got the only score of the third quarter, a 44-yard touchdown reception by Jon Lilly that brought the Vikings to within five points of G-K.
But Kuhn’s catch put the Cogs up two scores with 8:50 left in the game, and a 35-yard touchdown pass from Bodey to Tre Williams came too late, as G-K was able to recover the ensuing onside kick and run the clock out.
The Cogs will take on Harvard next week in Genoa.