Bearcats finish ahead as Crisp scrimmage ended by weather

The Bearcats scored ten unanswered points against the Crisp County Cougars before the scrimmage ended due to lighting in the area. 

Centennial Field’s lighting alarm blared with 3:47 left in the first half halting the scrimmage. The National Federation of State High School Associations requires athletic matches to take a 30-minute stoppage after a lightning strike or thunderclap. If the lighting and thunder continue and cause a cumulative 2 hours of stoppage, the game is canceled.

Players and spectators were prompted to seek shelter away from the almost entirely metal stadium. Rain started to fall shortly after.

“It’s over,” said Rusty Josey, a hall-of-fame high school umpire and radio broadcaster of Bearcat games, about the possibility of the game resuming. “You’re playing a pre-season game, and you’ve got a wet field. Who’s going to risk their best player?”

Bainbridge’s points came from senior running back Keenan Phillips and senior kicker Nicholas Tyre. Thompson scored a 32-yard receiving touchdown off a dump-off from senior quarterback Cam Sanders in the first quarter. Tyre made the point after attempt and kicked a 32-yard field goal in the second quarter to give the Bearcats three more points. 

Head Coach Jeff Littleton said he was proud of the team’s effort in the game and said he was happy to see his guys high energy and excited to play.

The Bearcat defense was on display during the scrimmage. Senior safety James Jackson reeled in an interception early in the second quarter. Two Crisp County possessions later, junior Linebacker Braylon Phillips forced a fumble. Senior linebacker CJ Sanders recovered the fumble. The defense shut out the Cougars and forced them to punt three times.

“We had a pretty good night, defensively,” Littleton said. “Our communication was good, which usually is a little bit slack this time of year. I’m real proud of that, but we’ve still got a lot of things to work on.

Littleton said he plans to have coaches and players go over the scrimmage film in preparation of the Bearcats’ season opener against Eagles Landing Christian Academy on Aug. 18. The home game kicks off at 7 p.m.

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