BATTLE TO THE BITTER END: Top-ranked UMS-Wright knocks off Andalusia

Published 12:05 am Saturday, September 8, 2018

The No. 1-ranked UMS-Wright Bulldogs used a stout defense to knock off No.5 Andalusia 17-0 in Class 4A, Region 1 play on Friday night in Andalusia.

UMS-Wright got the ball to start the game and the Andalusia defense stepped up and forced a three-and-out.

On Andalusia’s first drive, Roosevelt Weaver got the Bulldogs a few yards, but a third down play came up about 1 yard short and Andalusia was forced to punt.

UMS-Wright took back over and picked up the first first down of the game on a short pass, but the Andalusia defense stepped up again and forced another punt.

Andalusia got nice yardage on the next drive from Josh Gurley and Caleb Smallwood, but a penalty to start the drive forced the Bulldogs to punt.

The visisting Bulldogs took over on their own 42-yard line and began to move the ball towards the end zone.

The Andalusia defense came up with a big stop and forced UMS-Wright to settle for a 26-yard field goal to put them on top 3-0 with 21 seconds left in the opening quarter.

Gurley picked up Andalusia’s first first down on the second play of the next drive with a 9-yard run.

However, the drive stalled and the Bulldogs were forced to punt once again.

UMS-Wright took back over and picked up three first downs on the first three plays of the drive.

A few plays later, UMS-Wright quarterback Skipper Snypes dove in from 1-yard out for the first touchdown of the game.

The extra point was good and UMS-Wright was on top 10-0 with 5:25 left in the first half.

The two squads traded punts to end the first half with UMS-Wright up 10-0.

Andalusia got the ball to start the second half, but after three quick plays the Bulldogs were forced to punt.

UMS-Wright took over at the own 42-yard line, but big stops in the back field from Chip Morgan, J.W. Jones and Smallwood made the visiting Bulldogs turn the ball over on downs.

Andalusia got a first down on the next drive off of an UMS-Wright penalty, but a few plays later the Bulldogs were forced to punt.

On the next UMS-Wright drive, Snypes found a man in the end zone on a third-and-goal play from the 8-yard line for the final score of the game.

The extra point was good and gave UMS-Wright a 17-0 lead with 9:36 remaining the game.

Andalusia picked up a pair of first downs on the next drive off of two UMS-Wright penalties, but once again Andalusia’s offense stalled and were forced to punt.

“The defense has played well and I’ve said that all year long,” Andalusia head coach Trent Taylor said. “Offensively, we are very inept and that’s my fault. We’ve got to find something that we can do that allows our defense to get a few minutes break. Again, whether it’s not playing hard or whatever the case may be, but that’s on me. We will figure out what it is and try to get better next week.”

Taylor said that UMS-Wright played like the top-ranked team in Class 4A.

“They are deserving of everything they get,” Taylor said. “Defensevely, I said all week they are exactly where they are supposed to be when they are supposed to be there. We’ve got to overcome that. We have to find something within us to be able to give our defense the opportunity to win a football game because they are playing way too hard to not do that.”

Andalusia remains in region play next week when they face Monroe County who is coached by former Andalusia Bulldog Marshall Locke.