Bearcat football shines bright at 2018 banquet

Published 3:43 pm Friday, March 8, 2019

At the most crowded Bainbridge football banquet in head coach Jeff Littleton’s 6-year tenure, Bearcat players were awarded for their hard work, will to win, and historic state title run during the 2018 season.

But really, it was about the hardware.

Players were called up alphabetically to receive their 2018 State Championship rings, each tucked away inside its own box, and letterman jacket patches. Once everyone had received their boxes, the team opened them together.

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The Bearcat Café swelled with cheering and clapping. Players slid the gold jewelry onto their fingers, posing and high fiving.

“It’s not just a piece of jewelry,” said head coach Jeff Littleton, encouraging his players to realize the rings should be seen as more than just a fashion accessory.

It’s a symbol of a team that started the season 2-4 which battled back to the state championship game, he said, where the Bearcats beat Warner Robins 47-41 in triple overtime. That was after beating four Top 10 teams in the state playoffs, where three of those games came on the road, a feat never before done in Bainbridge program history.

Seniors on the team were recognized for their 36-16 record over four seasons, the best record of any class in Bearcat history. It is also the only class to reach two state semifinal games (2015, 2018).

Other awards and recognitions were also handed out at the banquet, highlighting the successes of individual players throughout the 2018 season.

Receiving the academic award for highest GPA per grade level were freshman Pierce Taunton, sophomore Will Beckham, junior Garrett Sigman and senior Ben Mitchell.

Region 1-AAAAA second team awards were handed to quarterback Quayde Hawkins, running back Caleb McDowell, wide receiver Aaron Spivie, tight end Bowen Dodson, offensive lineman Brad Mitchell, linebacker Bryce Worthy, defensive back Deyon Bouie and defensive back Jaheim Jenkins.

First team awards were given to linebacker Randy Fillingame, who also received All-State honorable mention, offensive lineman Jacob McLaughlin and Roman Harrison. Harrison was also recognized as Region Player of the Year, Class AAAAA Player of the Year and First team All-State.

The Hard Hat Award, given to players who performed at the highest level they could at practice and games with a great attitude, was given to Tim Anderson, Tevin McCray, Amari Peterson, Coryn Burns, Fred Thompson, Anthony Brooks, Bryce Worthy, Michael Ryan, Rashad Broadnax and Damien Scott.

The Breakout award, given to players that were first year starters who performed at a high level, was given to Jaheim Jenkins, Quayde Hawkins, Deyon Bouie, Tim Allison, Ralph Register, Jackson Wheeler, Vick Wimberly, Zyon Bouie, Eric Sanders, Tahari Tate and Lawson Chandler.

Aaron Spivie and Caleb McDowell were honored with the Iron Man award.

The Tim Anderson Award, Demonstrated the same qualities of character, leadership, academic achievement and hustle as Bearcat great Thomas Livingston Smith, Jr., was awarded to Tim Anderson and Caleb McDowell.

The Bearcat Award, given to players that exemplify the Bearcat core values of Pride, Toughness, Effort, Excellence and Trustworthiness, was given to Randy Fillingame, Roman Harrison, Bowen Dodson, Jacob McLaughlin, Brad Mitchell and Ben Mitchell.