BUTTE – The Butte High Bulldogs’ home game against Missoula Sentinel on Sept. 21 was something out of Friday Night Lights.
Down 38-37 after just scoring a touchdown in overtime Butte head coach Arie Grey made the decision to go for the two-point conversion to win the game on Homecoming. Running back Kameron Moreno took the handoff from quarterback Tommy Mellott and gained a gritty, hard-fought 3 yards and punched it in for the win. It seemed the whole city of Butte was experiencing a ground-shaking earthquake from the deafening cheers at Naranche Stadium. Coach Grey said that decision to go for it had already been pre-determined.
“When we went into overtime I went to our offensive coordinator, Mike Schmidt, ‘If they score and kick the extra point, when we score we’re going to go for two,'” said Grey.
Although it was risky, the players were all for the gutsy call. Mellott recounted a time last year where they decided to kick an extra point instead of go for two.
“Starting off from last year, we played (Billings) West at home, we went to overtime with them. We ended up losing through the second overtime. We had a chance that I, really as a whole entire team, we kind of regretted not taking that chance, not going for two because we had momentum,” Mellott said. “The same situation came up: We had momentum going into overtime, and, yeah, everyone was on board.”
The Bulldogs don’t get to live in that moment for long. They have a tough upcoming stretch of back-to-back road games in Billings, facing West on Friday and Senior on Oct. 5. Butte’s first stop is against a talented West team which sits currently at 4-1, tied for second in the Class AA standings.
“They have a lot of threats — they have a good receiver, a really talented running back, really good offensive line. But if we just play with confidence and energy, then I think we can definitely beat them,” said Moreno.
“We’re going down into hostile territory, up against a great program that’s well-coached, plays hard and plays physical, and we couldn’t be more excited,” added Grey.
The Bulldogs and Golden Bears kick off at 7 p.m. Friday at Daylis Stadium.