The Fairdale High School football team produced a memorable final drive to win its first game of the season.
The Bulldogs (1-5) conducted a successful two-minute drill, driving to Atherton’s 35 yard line, when Bulldog senior quarterback Jordan Brock scrambled out of the pocket. Trying to keep the play alive, Brock found junior wide receiver Justus Montgomery open in the back of the end zone, connective for a touchdown that gave the Bulldogs a dramatic 19-17 win on the road.
“We’re excited because we always talk about the first win being the toughest one to get,” Fairdale coach Matt Wright said. “The kids had to fight tooth and nail to get back in it. We had to fight back and to be able to get that touchdown with 35 seconds left was great for the team.”
The game looked to be in Fairdale’s hands as a touchdowns from senior running back Devin Vessels and a pass from Brock to senior wide receiver Brandon Moore gave the Bulldogs a 13-3 lead at halftime.
But the Rebels (2-5) battled back, scoring on two straight touchdown runs to make it 17-13 late in the fourth quarter, leading up to Brock’s late heroics.
“There were two minutes to go in the game and only one time out left,” Wright said. We knew we probably had to go through the air, which is something we don’t do great but something we can do if we have to. On that final play we actually had a protection breakdown that allowed our quarterback to get out of the pocket. He threw it up there, Montgomery made an amazing catch, twisting his body and everything, and when you see that effort, it paid off when you talk about the play to the whistle mentality.
Fairdale’s late winning touchdown proved to be the closest game in Thursday’s battle of Jefferson County Public Schools games.
Fern Creek 41, Southern 34: The Tigers (5-2) were able to hold off the Trojans (2-4) on Thursday night in a back and forth match up. Trojan’s Chris Rudolph scored a 65-yard run for the first play of the game, and the Tigers responded with a 36 yard fumble recovery for a score.
On the ground, Tigers running backs had a field day, with Kyree Hawkins earning 172 yards to go with two scores, while Devon Blincoe scored once and had 125 yards on 10 carries.
“That’s what happens when you have guys running downhill, running hard, and hitting holes,” Fern Creek coach Josh Abell said.
Doss 59, Iroquois 0: The Dragons (3-3) got off to an explosive start against the Raiders (0-6) on Thursday night and couldn’t be caught. Senior running back Hamilton Wilson had 10 carries for 278 yards and three touchdowns on the night.
Ballard 44, Seneca 0: It was all Ballard from the opening kickoff, as the Bruins took a 31-0 lead after one quarter and never looked back.
“The main thing I asked from our guys was maturity,” Ballard head coach Mike Copley said. “Let’s go out and play extremely hard and let’s work on us. That’s one of the things from day one that I’ve tried to preach to them. We’re not too worried about the scoreboard or opponent. Obviously that’s important but we’re trying to prepare each individual to play within the framework of the team. I felt today they were engaged in the ball game and we got better at some things we were lacking.”
Central 28, Moore 0
Eastern 44, J’town 0
Valley 55, Shawnee 6