Published 10:48 pm Friday, November 11, 2016

Bulldogs knock off 2-time defending 4A state champion

The No. 1-ranked Andalusia Bulldogs hammered the two-time defending state champions the Leeds Greenwave with a 40-0 victory Friday night in Leeds in the second round the 2016 AHSAA football playoffs.

Andalusia’s stout defense went straight to work to get the game started. Antonio Gurley came up with a big stop that helped force the Green Wave into a punt after just three plays.

The Bulldogs took over on offense and took the lead four plays later.

Zack Woods carries the ball in to the end zone against Leeds.

Zack Woods carries the ball in to the end zone against Leeds.

Ethan Wilson connected with B.J. Anderson for a 20-yard game to get the offense started.

Wilson capped off the drive with a 14-yard touchdown pass to Allan George. With the extra point, Andalusia was on top 7-0 with 8:49 left in the opening period.

After giving up a first down on the Greenwave’s first play from scrimmage, the Bulldog defense forced another punt. Back-to-back tackles for losses from Gurley helped force the punt.

Andalusia then started to drive the ball, but ended up having to punt.

The punt from Wilson was muffed by the Leeds return man, and Andalusia recovered the ball on the Greenwave 20-yard line.

Jamal Hourel busted loose for a 15-yard game on the next play and then Gurley finished the drive with a 1-yard score. The extra point put Andalusia up 14-0 with 1:45 left in the first quarter.

Jamal Hourel jukes by one defender.

Jamal Hourel jukes by one defender.

Gurley came up with a big sack on the Greenwave’s next possession, and the Bulldogs forced another punt from Leeds.

Wilson connected with Anderson with a 38-yard pick up, and one play later Hourel pounded the ball in from 5 yards out to extend the Bulldog lead to 20-0 with just over 8 minutes left before halftime.

Andalusia and leads traded punts as the half wound down, but the Bulldogs found the end zone once again before intermission.

Wilson found Derrick McQueen streaking down the middle of the field for a 26-yard touchdown. At halftime, Andalusia held a 27-0 advantage.

After trading punts to start the second half, Andalusia found the end zone again to put the Greenwave on the ropes.

A strong drive from the Bulldogs was capped off with an 18-yard touchdown scamper from Zack Woods.

With the Greenwave on the ropes, Gurley delivered the knockout blow with a monster hit on the Leeds quarterback that demoralized the home sidelines.

The final score of the game came on a 2-yard touchdown from Roosevelt Weaver.

“We played an outstanding game tonight,” Andalusia head coach Trent Taylor said. “All three aspects of our game were working well. Our defense really played lights out again, we threw the ball well, we caught the ball well and I thought we ran the ball well. Everything was clicking and I think that all started on Sunday. The kids came in Sunday extremely focused and they continued that all week.”

With the win the Bulldogs advance to quarterfinals were they will travel to Tallassee.

Kickoff is at 7 p.m.