Trailing 14-7 late in the fourth quarter, the Montezuma-Cortez High School Panthers drove to the red zone.
Out of the wildcat formation on fourth down, Alex Lopez threw a 20-yard pass to Christian Chupp that was initially ruled a touchdown by the side judge.
However, the back judge called the pass incomplete, and the ball was turned over on downs to Centauri with 40 seconds left.
We went from extreme exhilaration to extreme disappointment in less than three seconds, Panthers coach Casey Coulter said.
M-CHS dropped the road game, 14-7.
Centauri (3-2, 1-1 2A Mountain League) led 7-0 at halftime in a defensive struggle. Out of the break, the Falcons kicked off to Tam Phan and the Panthers senior ran back the kickoff 90 yards for the game tying touchdown. It was Phans second kickoff return for a score this season. But the Panthers (1-5, 0-2 2A ML) did not score again.
Were extremely young and inexperienced, Coulter said. Theres not a whole lot of offensive weapons. Theres not a lot of depth or experienced players. Thats whats killing us right now.
M-CHS is expected to have senior captain lineman Stephen Candelaria return this week from a concussion that has sidelined him. Coulter also hopes to have some starters return from academic suspension.
The Panthers will host Alamosa (1-4, 0-1 2A ML) on Friday at 7 p.m. at Panther Stadium for homecoming.