MOUNT PISGAH CHRISTIAN 28, MOUNT PARAN CHRISTIAN 24

Aaron Winchester threw two touchdown passes to Ben Miller in the final five minutes, including the game-winning 18-yarder with 28.9 seconds remaining, as Mount Pisgah Christian rallied from a 24-14 deficit to defeat Mount Paran Christian 28-24 on Friday and clinch the Region 6-A Division B championship.

The Patriots drove 57 yards in just more than a minute after taking over on downs at their 43-yard line with 1:30 to play. Winchester completed 4-of-5 passes for 50 yards and rushed twice for 7 yards on the decisive drive.

Mount Pisgah (8-0, 4-0) hosts Fellowship Christian next week and then will face the fourth-place team from subregion A in a crossover game. Ninth-ranked Mount Paran (6-2, 3-1) falls into second place in the subregion. The Eagles face defending subregion champion Walker next week before concluding the regular season with a crossover game.

Unlike in the higher classifications, however, Class A crossover games don’t determine state playoff berths. Class A uses a power-ranking system to set its playoff fields for the private and public schools.

Mount Pisgah got a big break midway through the fourth quarter, when it had the ball at fourth-and-14 at the Mount Paran 23. The Patriots were going to go for the first down, but Mount Paran jumped offside, and the Patriots decided to kick a field goal once they got closer to the end zone. However, two more offside penalties on Mount Paran moved the ball to the 8 and gave Mount Pisgah a first down. From there, Winchester threw a touchdown pass to Miller to cut the lead to 24-21 with 4:41 to play.

Winchester finished the game 21-for-40 passing for 278 yards and four touchdowns and carried 16 times for 60 yards, but Mount Pisgah never led until the final minute.

That’s because Mount Paran controlled the game early with a running game led by Dorian Walker and Emoni Williams. Walker scored on a 2-yard run in the first quarter and a 40-yarder in the third and finished with 170 yards on 28 carries.

Williams had 109 yards on eight carries, and his 72-yard run in the fourth quarter gave the Eagles a 24-14 lead.

But the Eagles couldn’t put Mount Pisgah away. Mount Paran hurt itself with two first-half turnovers and had a short field goal blocked in the first quarter.