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Bulldogs shut out Tigers, 21-0

Big plays were the name of the game for the Andalusia Bulldogs last night in high school football action against the visiting Monroe County Tigers.

Andalusia scored on the second play of the game to build an early 7-0 lead and broke free of the leash in the second half for two more touchdowns and a 21-0 win.

Senior running back Richard Justice started the game right where he left off during last week's win against Gulf Shores. Justice took a handoff from quarterback C.T. Eldridge and raced 52 yards for a touchdown on the second play of the game. David Kyle added an extra point out of the hold by Josh Dutton and the Bulldogs held a 7-0 lead.

Monroe County moved the ball slowly against the Bulldog defense out toward midfield following the ensuing kickoff. Andalusia's defense, however, stood its ground and a sack by Durrell Rawls all but ended the Tiger drive bringing up a fourth-and-22 situation. The Tigers decided to punt.

The score remained 7-0 at the end of the first quarter and late into the second quarter. Andalusia took over possession of the pigskin at their own 37-yard line with 3:17 left in the first half.

The Bulldogs appeared to have added to their lead when Justice raced 38 yards on a pass play. Justice caught the perfectly thrown ball by Eldridge despite double coverage and broke four tackles on his way to the end zone, but a penalty negated the score.

Andalusia eventually moved the ball down to the Monroe County 25-yard line before a fumble stopped the drive with 59 seconds left in the half.

Monroe County failed to earn a first down as the half came to an end.

In the second half, the Bulldogs seemed energized by the performance of the AHS Marching Band. The defense appeared to be especially fired up at the start of the second quarter forcing the Tigers to go three-and-out on the first possession of the half. Jarvis Davis had a sack for a 10-yard loss on second down to set the tone.

Andalusia's offense got the ball back via a punt and marched down the gridiron for a touchdown and a 14-0 lead.

Dohoney capped off the eight-play drive with a 16-yard touchdown run up the gut of the Tiger defense. Kyle's PAT was good out of Dutton's hold and Andalusia held a 14-0 lead.

The score remained 14-0 until early in the fourth quarter when Eldridge found Neal Patterson on a pass play that covered 31 yards for the score. The PAT by Kyle was good out of Dutton's hold and the Bulldogs had a 21-0 lead.

Dohoney had a big play on the scoring drive taking in a screen pass and rumbling down the field behind a huge, pancake block by big No. 69 (Eric Johnson).

Andalusia's defense continued to halt the Tiger offense and the Bulldog offense was content to run the ball and eat up clock en route to a 21-0 victory.

The win improves the Bulldogs' record to 2-1 on the season and a perfect 2-0 in Class 4A, Region 1. The loss drops the Tigers to 1-2 on the season and 0-2 in Region 1 play.

Andalusia Head Coach Paul Woolley said Justice's touchdown run in the first quarter is a play that always seems to catch the Tigers off guard.

"We have started with that play against them three years in a row," Woolley said. "Every time, we cracked it for a long gain because of the way they set up their defense."

He said the team had a big play early, but he was more pleased with the effort the Bulldogs showed in the second half.

"The effort in the second half was tremendous," Woolley said. "I think if we got that kind of effort in the second half. We're going to have to be competitive."

Penalties hurt the Bulldogs by negating some big plays, but Woolley said those types of miscues show the energy he wants from his players.

"We dropped a touchdown pass, we had a clip behind a touchdown pass and we had a clip on a punt return," Woolley said. "That is the aggressiveness we want but we have to correct those mistakes and do it the right way."

The Bulldogs' next game is another Class 4A, Region 1 game when the UMS-Wright Bulldogs come to town. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.