The majority of Friday night’s regular season finale between Godby and Lincoln was defined by explosive offense and long-yardage scoring plays.
The end juxtaposed stiff defense and the difference of inches.
After the two teams combined for 34 first-quarter points, in a game where two running backs went for over 200 yards, Godby’s final effort to score tying points ended with a measurement.
Cougars quarterback Darius Bradwell was short on a fourth-and-3, and Lincoln held Godby to just eight points in the second half as the Trojans won 32-24 at Gene Cox Stadium on senior night.
“I guess that’s how it works, the ebb and flow of it all that it would come back to a defensive play,” Lincoln coach Yusuf Shakir said. “I’m just excited for the kids though.”
And why not, especially Trojans senior running back Ricky Henrilus, who missed most of his senior season after suffering a high ankle sprain in the first game of the year.
Henrilus was expected to carry the load all year, and the Florida Atlantic commit would help the Trojans achieve their goals.
Finally looking healthy during Monday’s District 2-7A tiebreaker, Henrilus spring-boarded from that effort with the best game of his career.
He carried 20 times for 170 yards in the first half, scoring touchdowns of 1, 44 and 6 yards.
Henrilus finished with 38 carries for 214 yards and his fourth touchdown of the game with 6:04 left in the fourth quarter proved the game winner.
“We came a long way,” Henrilus said. “This was our senior night and we wanted it. We did it.”
He was at a loss for words when asked how to explain sitting for so long and being unable to help his team, but returning to finish with an exclamation point.
“I don’t know how to answer that,” Henrilus said. “First, I want to thank God because without him— he healed my ankle. Then my linemen helped me out, but I really don’t know how to answer that question.”
That’s OK. His play spoke volumes, empowering those on his team that were watching.
That included the Lincoln defense, which had been torched by the up-tempo, read-option Godby offense.
“He was there the whole year (on the sideline) telling the offense to pick it up,” said defensive back Raekwon Archer, who made a big stop on third down to create Godby’s fourth-and-3.
“When we see one dude pick up the pace, we need to meet the requirements of the defense our coach sets.”
Bradwell, Watson carry the load
Henrilus’ performance and some nifty converted passes on third and fourth down by Lincoln quarterback Chris Brimm helped offset the wrecking ball rushing crew that was Bradwell and Godby running back Tyquan Watson.
Bradwell finished with 15 carries for 171 yards and a touchdown, while Watson carried 19 times for 251 yards and three touchdowns.
“We just had a tough time stopping people,” Godby coach Todd Lanter said, the Cougars’ season ending short of the playoffs for the first time since 2002. “We’ve been able to score points, but haven’t stopped anyone. We had (457 yards rushing tonight and) 530 yards last week. It’s just one of those things. We’ll go back and look at it all, get better and come back next year.”
Watson, a Troy commit, scored on runs of 4, 92 and 65 yards, the latter the Cougars’ only second-half score, coming just minutes into the third quarter.
“Tyquan played a great game tonight,” Lanter added. “Real proud of him, but his football career is not over. He’ll play at the next level, but he had a great game tonight.”
Godby receiver Mike Carrigan returned a kickoff 78 yards for a touchdown during a blitz of first-quarter points, while Brimm hooked up with fullback Keyvon Williams on a 24-yard scoring play in the second half.
Kalil Clark kicked field goals of 20 and 41 yards for the Trojans, who host a first-round playoff game against Lee next week. Lincoln (4-6) feels much more confident, given the last several weeks of wins, that they’re on track to make a run and surprise a lot of people.
“Right now, it’s 0-0 going into the playoffs,” Archer said. “It’s a new season. We’ve just got to pick it up and go all the way to state. That’s mentality. Be aggressive and do what we need to do.”
LINCOLN 42, GODBY 34
Godby 20 6 8 0 — 34
Lincoln 14 14 3 11 — 42
G — Tyquan Watson 4 run (conversion failed), 10:52
L — Ricky Henrilus 1 run (Kalil Clark kick), 8:59
G — Watson 92 run (Darius Bradwell conversion run), 4:56
L — Henrilus 44 run (Clark kick), 4:40
G — Mike Carrigan 78 kick return (conversion failed), 4:25
L — Keyvon Williams 24 pass from Chris Brimm (Clark kick), 7:55
L — Henrilus 6 run (Clark kick), 7:07
G — Bradwell 3 run (conversion failed), 5:46
G — Watson 65 run (Bradwell conversion run), 10:29
L — Clark 20 field goal, 6:21
L — Clark 43 field goal, 9:58
L — Henrilus 1 run (Freddie Simmons conversion pass from Brimm), 6:04
Passing— Godby: Darius Bradwell 3-11-37-0-0; Lincoln: Chris Brimm 11-24-178-1-0; Keyvon Williams 0-1-0-0-0
Rushing— Godby: Bradwell 15-171, Tyquan Watson 19-251, Samondre Johnson 2-7, Mike Carrigan 3-37, Michael Hudson 1-(-5); Lincoln: Ricky Henrilus 38-214, Denzel Washington 9-40, Marquel Pittman 2-13, Brimm 4-(-21)
Receiving— Godby: Carrigan 3-37; Lincoln: Fred Daughtry 4-62, Keyvon Williams 3-48, Malik Garye 1-18, Will Farmer 1-16, Pittman 2-44
Godby (3-6), Lincoln (4-6)
Godby, season over; Lincoln vs. Lee, Nov. 13, Region 1-7A quarterfinal
Leon gets win No. 599
Hosting a game on its campus against Fort Walton Beach, the Leon football team captured win No. 599 in program history during the school’s historic 100th football season.
The Lions beat the Vikings, 56-10, cruising behind six turnovers created by the defense.
Leon quarterback Ty Glasco got things off to a glowing start with a 65-yard touchdown run and senior running back Sam Thomas found the end zone not long after.
In the second quarter, senior linebacker Joey Grant made one of three interceptions on the night and returned it 90 yards for a score. Lions defensive backs Henry Segura III and Quyterrious Shaw had the others.
The Lions were in the Vikings’ backfield all night long, and defensive tackle Gabe Beyer made his presence felt with four sacks.
Beyer also got to score a rare touchdown, plunging in from one-yard out in the third quarter to cap his senior year.
Leon (5-5) will have to wait until next year for win No. 600, however, after missing the playoffs courtesty of Monday’s three-way tiebreaker losses for District 2-7A.
Lincoln 42, Godby 34
Leon 56, Fort Walton Beach 10
Wakulla 28, Jefferson County 14
Blountstown 34, Vernon 8
Port St. Joe 41, FAMU DRS 18
Wewahitchka 38, Franklin County 0
Liberty County 55, Baker 39
Mayo Lafayette 47, Maclay 14
Madison County 42, Baker County 7
Taylor County 19, Newberry 16
Sneads 42, West Gadsden 14
Rickards 32, Chiles 24 (Thursday)