Bulldogs blank McKenzie

Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 22, 2005

Bodie Pickens

The Brantley Bulldogs defeated the McKenzie Tigers 57-0 en rout to its sixth region championship in seven years.

The Bulldogs are riding an eight game winning streak (8-1) while the Tigers fell to 0-9 on the season.

The game itself, played at Williams-Vickery Field, turned out to be a reflection of how both teams have faired this year.

On one hand, the victorious Bulldogs boast

a considerate amount of depth that keeps gaining valuable experience heading into the playoffs.

On the opposing sidelines, McKenzie is just trying to make it through the season without anyone else getting injured.

To no surprise Friday night, the tale of two different seasons played out.

The Bulldogs scored touchdowns on every first half possession while the Tigers had only one first down.

By halftime, Brantley had a 39-0 lead.

Brantley was led by a strong offense in which the passing game set up the run.

&uot;We got some good work in tonight,&uot; Bulldogs coach David Lowery said.

&uot;We played a lot of kids and that will hopefully help us out as we head into the playoffs.&uot;

As expected, many Bulldogs contributed in the win.

Senior quarterback Edgar Walker led the charge as he completed 7-of-9 passes for 104 yards.

Two of the completions went for TDs as Brantley jumped on the Tigers early by the score of 12-0.

&uot;Anytime the passing game is working like that, then the running game is bound to be effective,&uot; Lowery said.

&uot;All season, we have been doing a good job of setting up the run with our passing game.&uot;

The effective Bulldog rushing attack accounted for seven touchdowns and 262 yards behind a collection of tailbacks.

Junior James Pittman had 98 yards on just three carries and junior Chris Booker had 24 yards on three carries.

Booker scored on a one-yard run up the middle with 2:25 left in the first period to put the Bulldogs up 19-0.

On their next possession, Pittman coasted 50 yards down the sidelines for a touchdown with 9:59 left in the first half.

The Bulldogs were now up 27-0.

Not to be outdone, Brantley senior tailback Billy Frazier increased the lead to 33-0 on a 16-yard run off a draw play with 6:48 remaining in the half.

Frazier had 44 yards on five carries.

Back up quarterback Jonathan Helms ended the half with a 6-yard touchdown run with 46 seconds remaining.

In the midst of the scoring, the Bulldog defense turned back the Tigers on seven three & outs on offense.

&uot;Our defense did a good job tonight,&uot; Lowery said.

&uot;They played the way I expected them to.&uot;

McKenzie head coach Timothy Moorer also thought his Tiger team did a good job.

&uot;Our guys didn’t quit tonight.

They played hard every snap and held their head high,&uot; Moorer said.

The Tigers dressed out less than 20 players while the Bulldogs had twice as many to compete.

This young Tiger team has had various injuries this season that has exposed their lack of depth.

&uot;We’re just trying to make it through the season,&uot; Moorer said.

&uot;Once this young team gets experience and a couple of years under their belt, then you will see some results.&uot;

Moorer also discussed the importance of implementing an off season weight program.

&uot;With more conditioning and more weight training, I believe it will help us down the road.&uot;

In the meantime, the 2005 season continues to look bright for the Bulldogs.

&uot;Our goal is to peaking at the right time, which would be going into the playoffs,&uot; Lowery said.

Brantley came out in the second half peaking as the Bulldogs scored on the opening possession.

Junior Jon Tyson highlighted the drive with his 5-yard touchdown run with 5:34 left in the third quarter.

The Bulldogs tacked on two more scores in the fourth with a 25-yard rushing TD by sophomore Roy Knighten and a 13-yard scamper by fellow sophomore Justin Wright.

Juniors Terry McClain and Jeffrey Daniels caught the two scoring strikes from Walker in the first quarter.

McClain had a 19-yard TD catch while Daniels snagged in a 10-yard TD.

&uot;Overall, we played well tonight,&uot; Lowery said.

Brantley looks to continue its winning streak as the Bulldogs face rival Luverne next Thursday.

&uot;Luverne is our big rival and we better be ready to play a tough game next (Thursday),&uot; Lowery said.

While Brantley prepares for a championship run, the McKenzie Tigers will prepare for next season.

&uot;Our goal is to get full strength by next season.

Its going to require a lot of hard work but I know these guys are up to the challenge,&uot; Moorer said.

McKenzie will close out their 2005 campaign Thursday night at Red Level.