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Bearcats hang on for win

Published 2:21am Saturday, August 24, 2013

The three to nothing score doesn’t show it, but the Bainbridge High School Bearcats’ football victory over East Gadsden (Fla.) on Friday night will surely rank among the team’s proudest moment in recent years.

With a new head coach, a rain-soaked field for the second week in a row, and an unfamiliar opponent, some may have doubted whether the Bearcats could pull out a victory.

But the varsity squad, led by 27 seniors, gave Coach Jeff Littleton his first win in Bainbridge by surmounting a last-minute attack by East Gadsden.

After almost three scoreless quarters, the Bearcats got on the scoreboard when Daniel Provence’s 27-yard field goal with 33.3 seconds left in the third.

Late in the fourth, a good punt return took East Gadsden to the Bearcats’ 28-yard-line.

The Jaguars’ Dedendrik Thomas ran 18 yards to the 10, then rushed again to the 6. A personal foul against BHS moved the ball to the 3. Then the Jaguars had four plays to try and score, just narrowly missing as the Bearcat defenders literally pushed back together as one.

Malik Tate, Elsamar Williams and Calvin Isom all had key tackles in the end.

“This group of kids is full of pride and effort and courage, they just go all out, all the time,” Coach Littleton said after the game. “They’ve been doing that since I was hired in March, they never batted an eye…They worked hard from the beginning and it shows right there. They never gave up.”

The rain clearly affected the kicking games of both teams, but Littleton said it didn’t bother him.

“The weather, no, heck, we just played ball. We don’t worry about the weather. Like I tell them, don’t worry about the things we can’t control.”

Defensive back Craig Cooper intercepted an East Gadsden pass and broke up two others. Tremaine McCray also had a strong game at linebacker, infiltrating the Jaguars’ backfield and tackling for losses.

Victor Bodison caught a 41-yard pass from Preston Norris to set up the Bearcats’ field goal.

 

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