Plagued by penalties and miscues in the passing game all evening the Lincoln Abes fell nine yards short of a thrilling comeback against the 21st ranked Timberline Blazers. With the sound of the Timberline crowd singing "Hey, hey goodbye" in their ears Lincoln fell 26-20 Friday night at Lincoln Bowl. With the loss Lincoln drops to 4-1 on the season. Timberline improves to 2-3, with both victories coming on the road.
Lincoln quarterback Jordan Kitna didn't get a lot of help from his receivers who dropped several passes, but in the end the sophomore quarterback turned out to be his own worst enemy. Trailing by six with a minute and a half to go and second and five on the Timberline nine yard line, Kitna threw his third interception of the game into the waiting hands of defensive back Jeff Winstead. Timberline was able to run out the clock from that point.
The offensive star of the night was Timberline's Andrew Paquin. The junior running back carried 29 times for 151 yards on the evening, including a 52 yard scamper down the right sideline in the second quarter. That run set up Markell Barnes' three yard touchdown which gave Timberline its 20-6 halftime advantage. Timberline outgained Lincoln 182 yards to 54 yards in the first half. Lincoln was penalized for more yardage than they amassed on offense in the opening half. The Abes were whistled for 150 yards in penalties on the evening.
Neither quarterback distinguished himself in front of the large crowd. While Kitna was completing nine passes in 22 attempts for 169 yards and the three picks, Timberline's Gabe Gutierrez had troubles of his own. Guttierez was eight for 12 on the night but for only 54 yards. He threw two interceptions to go along with touchdown passes of 14 and four yards.
Lincoln attempted to establish a ground game at various points in the contest. Unfortunately for the homestanding Abes their rushes were blown up often enough that they were unable to gain credibility in the rushing game. Of Lincoln's 24 rushing attempts no fewer than five of them were thrown for losses of at least five yards. The Abes finished with just 64 yards on the ground.