Bearcats taken down to wire against Brooks County, prevail 27-26

Published 11:32 pm Friday, September 13, 2019

As if it being Friday the 13th and a full moon wasn’t strange enough.

The Bainbridge Bearcats (4-0) were taken down to the wire by Brooks County on Friday night, but prevailed after a late go-ahead touchdown from Deyon Bouie and a missed PAT by the Trojans in the final moments of the game at Centennial Field.

Brooks County lined up for a 2-point conversion down 27-26 with 1:28 left in the game. An illegal procedure call pushed them back five more yards, and the Trojans decided to go for the extra point, hoping for overtime. The kick was low and short, bouncing off the crossbar and securing the win for Bainbridge.

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The Trojans (1-2) went tit-for-tat with Bainbridge throughout the night, taking the lead at two different points in the game.

“That shows you, you have to go to work every day,” said coach Jeff Littleton. “It doesn’t matter who you are playing. If you don’t execute the game plan on both sides of the ball and the kicking game, then you’re going to find yourself in a battle with a AA team. That is a tough football team right there, and they caused every bit of pressure that they gave us.”

Bainbridge got off to a quick 10-0 lead in the first few minutes of the game. Hawkins found Michael Ryan for a touchdown pass, and the Bearcats recovered an onside kick on the ensuing kickoff. Kicker Garrett Sigman hit a 23-yard field goal on the next drive. Brooks County responded quickly and scored within the next minute.

On Bainbridge’s next drive, a series of missed passes and a third-and-long set up a Trojan interception that was returned from midfield to the 3-yard line. They scored the next play and took he lead 13-10.

Bainbridge went ahead 17-13 when Broadnax dashed into the end zone on a 3-yard run in the second quarter. Once again, Brooks County responded within the next minute with a 49-yard touchdown run to take a 20-17 lead at halftime.

Brooks County was on the move again in the third quarter when a deep pass was intercepted by Deyon Bouie and returned to midfield. The drive set up a 38-yard field goal from Sigman that tied the game 20-20 with just over 3 minutes left in the third quarter.

Bainbridge took the lead for good when Hawkins found Bouie across the middle. Bouie dodged and escaped tackles from all angles, refusing to go down without crossing into the end zone, where he put the Bearcats up 27-20.

The Bearcats were plagued by penalties throughout the night.

“We fell asleep at the wheel,” said Littleton. “We had a pretty good week of practice, but we are an undisciplined football team right now. We have too many people being undisciplined on our football team. We have to address that and continue to work on that.”

Bainbridge will have a bye week next week. Littleton said the team will use the extra time to work on fundamentals and address the penalty problem.

The Bearcats hit the road on Friday, Sept. 28, for a game against Crisp County in Cordele. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m.