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Cameron Smith

Delayed final minutes set records, then game gets even weirder

Cameron Smith
Prep Rally

Fels (Pa.) High and Franklin (Pa.) High finally did get to finish the final three-plus minutes of a marathon game which had been stopped because of darkness a week before. By the time it was all over, the teams combined to tie an all-time Philadelphia Public League record for combined points, with Fels walking away with a 56-46 win.

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Yet, as reported in both the Philadelphia Inquirer and Philadelphia Daily News, that combined-points record came even closer to falling than it appears, with a Franklin player intercepting a pass at his own 2-yard line and returning it 93 yards as time expired, only to fall just short of the end zone when he was tripped up at the 5-yard line.

Because of that dramatic stop, Fels was the only team to score in the resumption of action between the teams, with Terry Brown earning the lone points of the final minutes, first on a 60-yard touchdown run and then converting the subsequent two-point conversion for good measure.

By game's end, Tyree Rucker of Fels had set school records for touchdown passes with six and passing yards with 324. Nijah Kelly set school records with 143 receiving yards and three touchdown catches.

Even if the officials and scorekeepers stopped keeping track when the final whistle blew, the teams still weren't willing to stop playing, either. According to Ted Silary of the Daily News, the two teams continued to scrimmage after the game's finish, taking on the role of each team's Thanksgiving Day opponent. The impromptu scrimmage was a natural fit since neither team could be picked up by their buses for more than an hour.

"We're pretending we're Dobbins for them and they're being Frankford for us," Fels coach Bill Harrigan, told the Daily News. "Our buses can't come back to get us until 4:30 anyway."

If that wasn't enough, the surreal afternoon got even more drama, because Dobbins -- the team Fels was impersonating for Franklin -- was actually in the stands watching the two teams scrimmage. The Dobbins team was there for a walk-through before it's Class AAA City Title against Archbishop Wood on Saturday.

That gave Dobbins plenty of opportunities to weigh in on its impersonators, though it was tight lipped on just how accurate Fels was in the extra scrimmage.

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