This past Friday, the Choctaws loaded up and traveled two and half hours South to take on the #1 team in 4a, the Andalusia Bulldogs. The Choctaws came into the game ranked #8. The stands were packed on both sides as the fans came to enjoy this top 10 matchup.
The Choctaws started the game off on defense and quickly forced the Bulldogs into a punting situation after just three plays. Just as it seemed like the game was getting off on the right foot for Bibb, the momentum quickly shifted as the punt was muffed and the Bulldogs recovered at the Choctaws 9 yard line. Again the Choctaws defense bowed its neck and following a huge tackle for a loss by Trashun Griffin, the Bulldogs were forced into a 4th and goal from the 11. Bryan Stewart came in and kicked a 28 yard field goal to put the Bulldogs up 3-0.
For the rest of the first quarter and much of the second quarter, both defenses took turns turning the other team’s offense away and forced punts or held on 4th downs. With just under 5 minutes to go in the first half, the Bulldogs struck again on a 3rd and 8 play. Jack Lathrop faked a handoff and rolled to his left and found #9 all alone behind the secondary for a 57 yard touchdown. Stewart extra point was good to extend the lead to 10-7.
** Side note here, I do not like to leave any kids name out of my articles. However, #9 for the Bulldogs deliberately stomped on a Choctaw defender late in the game and for that reason, he will not be mentioned in my article.
The Choctaws drove down the field on their next possession behind the arm and legs of quarterback, Jordan Leverette and Jay Harris. The drive would stall at the Bulldogs 10 yard line. Bibb sent in Kevin Duran who calmly kicked a 27-yard field goal to make the score 10-7.
Just as quickly as the momentum had slightly shifted towards the visitors’ sidelines, it quickly shifted back to the home side as Makalyster Crittended receives the kick at his own 15 and followed a wall of blockers down the left sideline for an 85 yard touchdown return. Stewart extra point again was good, and the score was 17-3 in favor of the Bulldogs as the first half came to an end.
The Choctaws received the opening kickoff and quickly began to drive down the field. Just as the Choctaws entered into Bulldogs territory, the Bulldogs forced a fumble and recovered it at their own 47. A few plays later, Zerrick Jones scored on a 5 yard run, Following Stewart’s third PAT of the night, the Bulldogs were up 24-3 as the game headed to the 4th quarter.
Both defenses again began to stand tall and forced the other team to punt. The Bulldogs finally got a drive going and had to settle for another field goal from Stewart, this one from 22 yards out to go up 27-3.
Bibb would find the end zone later in the quarter when Leverette hit Scooter Sanders for a 43 yard touchdown pass. Duran extra point made it 27-10, which would end up being the final score as the Bulldogs would hold onto the ball and run the clock out to end the game.
Leverette finished the night 6 of 15 for 101 yards and a touchdown. He added 62 yards on 11 carries.
Matthew Cash had 5 catches for 57 yards. Sanders had the one catch for a 43 yard touchdown.
On defense, Bibb was led by Xavier Rhine with 10 tackles. Ty Burkes, Griffin, and Dylan Goode each had 7 tackles a piece.
The Choctaws fall to 5-1 on the season and will jump back into region play this Friday night as they host the Hale County Wildcats. This will also be Homecoming so come early as the crowd will be a little larger than normal as the classes of 2013, 2003, and 1993 will be recognized. Pregame activities will begin around 6:00 and the game will kick off at 7 pm.