‘Cats end on high note

Published 1:33 am Saturday, November 3, 2012

Ta Bonham eludes Pike County defenders in the Bobcats’ 35-0 win last night.

The Opp Bobcats were eliminated from playoff contention last week after a tough loss to cross-county rival Straughn.

But Opp didn’t allow this season’s dismal results to break their spirit, as they shut out the Pike County Bulldogs 35-0 at home Friday night.

The Bobcats used a plethora of running backs to control the ground, the clock and ultimately, the game.

Junior Ta Bonham got things started, scoring what would be the first of many rushing touchdowns for the home team with 8:21 left in the first quarter.

Later in the first, Opp received the good fortune of a shanked punt and took over deep in Bulldog territory at the 21-yard line.

Junior receiver Johnathan Hines then created a little good luck of his own, leaping over a defender and muscling away an under-thrown fourth-and-18 jump-ball for the score.

After the successful PAT, Opp led 14-0 with 2:09 remaining in the first.

Late in the second quarter, Opp’s Trey Phillips recovered a Pike County fumble at the Opp 26-yard line.

And 10 plays later, after a ground attack featuring Onterrio Jones, Ty Wight, Bonham, and Phillips, Jones raced nine yards to paydirt, giving the Bobcats a 21-0 lead to take into the half.

Another Pike County punt opened the second half, and the Bobcat offense again went to work.

This drive, Opp’s dominant running game included new faces in quarterback Ethan Davis and Dyrian Savage, but arrived at the same result, as Bonham once again strolled into the end zone from three yards out to make the score 28-0, Bobcats, with 3:05 left in the third quarter.

Opp would score once more before the third period expired.

The Bobcat defense forced the Bulldogs to punt, but the punter mishandled the snap, and Opp recovered at the 23-yard line of Pike County.

On the very next play, Jones took the handoff and weaved through 23 yards of defenders on his way to his second score of the night.

At the end of the third quarter, the scoreboard read 35-0, Opp, and that is how the score would remain.

While Opp is obviously disappointed in not being able to compete in the playoffs, this win will go a long way in preparation for next year and also allowed the seniors to go out on a high note.

The Bobcats will look to improve on a respectable record of 6-4 in 2013.