West (0-7) responded to Clinton's scoring drive with a 17-play, 65-yard march. The Falcons pulled even at 6-6 when quarterback Josh Thiessen sneaked in from the 1-yard line with 7 minutes, 27 seconds left in the second quarter for the first of his three touchdowns. Carlos Wright's extra-point kick put West up 7-6.
The Falcons might have gone into halftime with a bigger lead had Thiessen not bobbled a snap on their next possession. Instead, Clinton's Kurtis Williams recovered at the Kings' 24-yard line.
Still, West went into the locker room with the one-point lead, and running back Tirael Malone already was over the 100-yard mark.
The River Kings, on the other hand, used halftime to regroup.
"We had an unpleasant talk," Maddasion said. "Coach just was saying basically you can't come out soft."
The second half was like a different game for the Kings. Much as they did in the fourth quarter last week in a comeback win at Burlington, the Kings exploded in the second half against West.
They took the opening kickoff and started from their 33-yard line. Eight plays later, they had the lead for good when Maddasion lofted a pass to leaping 6-foot-8 receiver Ernst, who caught it at the goal line and came down in the end zone for a 12-7 lead with 10:09 left.
Next, the defense stepped up. After Ronnie Smeltzer ran for a first down on West's first play, the Kings held Malone to 2 yards on first down, hit him hard and forced a fumble on the next play that West recovered and then got a pass knockdown from Jones to force a punt, one that traveled just 7 yards to the Clinton 43.
Three plays later, the Kings were in the end zone again when Dustin Caldwell broke off a 42-yard run down the right side to make it 18-7.