Lackawanna Trail scored first to take a lead in Friday night’s District 2 Class A football championship game at Old Forge.
The way Tyler Carey and the Blue Devils responded ultimately went a long way toward returning them to the top of the district.
Old Forge scored 16 points in the next 39 seconds after Lackawanna Trail’s early touchdown and went on to a 29-22 victory for their fourth district championship in five years.
The win gives the Blue Devils the first district title to be decided this year. It also sends them into the start of state play with a District 1-2 Subregional game against the winner of Saturday’s Delaware County Christian-Jenkintown District 1 final at a District 1 site.
The defending champion Lions opened the scoring with 2:51 left in the first quarter on a 6-yard Jeffrey Resto touchdown for a 7-0 lead.
The lead lasted just 14 seconds.
Carey returned the ensuing kickoff 91 yards for a touchdown and Brendan Mozeleski ran for the two-point conversion and an 8-7 lead.
Tommy Souriyavong then got the ball right back for Old Forge with an interception.
Freshman quarterback Dante Lucarelli found Carey for 47 yards and a touchdown before hitting Anthony Rios for the two-pointer and 16-7 lead after one quarter.
Lucarelli hit nine of his last 11 passes to finish 11-for-16 for a season-high 187 yards and three touchdowns.
Owen Hivner broke loose on a 60-yard run to set up a 2-yard Resto touchdown to bring the Lions within 16-14 with 4:14 left in the half.
Again, the Blue Devils answered.
Lucarelli’s 18-yard pass to Brett Wargo with 1:26 left in the second quarter gave Old Forge a 23-14 halftime lead.
The third quarter was scoreless before Old Forge opened a 29-14 lead on a 30-yard pass from Lucarelli to Rios with 10:15 left.
Lackawanna Trail made things interesting late.
Quarterback Nathan Rolka ran 23 yards for a touchdown with 30 seconds left and Resto added the two-point conversion run to cut the gap to seven.
Old Forge (10-1) recovered the on-side kick to preserve the win.
Lackawanna Trail finished 8-3 with two of its three losses coming to the Blue Devils.