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Football: Another conspiracy theory as the lights go out

September 24, 2011 | 12:03 pm

Ventura St. Bonaventure was making a furious fourth-quarter comeback Friday night against Oaks Christian when the lights suddenly went out after a punt. The ball ended up being downed on the one-yard line with St. Bonaventure behind, 27-24.

After a 22-minute delay that wiped out St. Bonaventure's momentum, the Seraphs were called for a holding penalty in the end zone, resulting in a safety. Game over. Oaks Christian won, 36-24, and for the second consecutive year, St. Bonaventure Coach Todd Therrien was wondering about the good fortune of the Lions and their coach, Bill Redell.

"Bill Redell has a hundred rabbits' feet in his pocket when he plays St. Bonaventure," Therrien said.

Therrien questioned the timing of the blackout. "It might have been an accident, but someone at Oaks Christian shut the lights out," he said.

Said Redell: "I don't blame the guy for being upset. If the shoe was on the other side, I'd be too. It hurt them because they had the momemtum."

The lights also went out last year for a soccer match at Oaks Christian. And years ago, sprinklers went on during another football game. Maybe it's a haunted field for visitors.

Athletic Director Jan Hethcock said the facility manager will be conducting an investigation. "Nobody knows what happened," he said.

Hethcock did point out that a switch to turn off the lights is located out of sight of the field, and if someone flipped the switch, they couldn't have had more perfect timing.

Crucial to the victory was the play of sophomore quarterback Brandon Dawkins, making his first start. He completed 16 of 20 passes for 168 yards. "He's the starting quarterback next Friday," Redell said.

-- Eric Sondheimer