Jemison pulls away in second half
By Brandon Sumrall | Special to the Advertiser
A hard fought first half of football between the Billingsley Bears and Jemison Panthers gave way to mistakes in the second half that cost the Bears on several occasions, as the Panthers pulled away late on their way to a 39-6 victory.
With the Bears winning the toss and electing to defer, the Panthers took first possession at their own 39-yard line. The Billingsley defense looked to be in prime possession to force the Panthers to a three and out but on third and 20 from their own 49, quarterback Kevin Martin would connect with Adrian Jackson for 22 yards and a Jemison first down.
With their drive still alive, the Panthers would March the remaining 27 yards and capped the drive with a Eric Evans four yard touchdown run to, with the PAT up and good by Alex Davison the Panthers took a 7-0 lead midway through the first.
A three and out by the Bears would lead to a Billingsley punt and a personal foul penalty that would set Jemison up first and ten at the Billingsley 26.
Four plays later and Evans had his second touchdown of the evening and the Panthers had a 13-0 lead with 3:57 to play in the first.
In the second quarter, quarterback Malik Callens connected with Taylor Arrington on first down for a 25-yard play that would move the Bears down to the Panthers 32.
A pass interference on first down would move the ball down to the 17 with 12 seconds to go. After a penalty moved the Bears back to the 27, a run by Raymond Cutler would move the Bears down to the 2-yard line with two seconds
remaining in the half.
From the shotgun, Callens would roll right and fire a shot to Starks in the end zone but the ball would be bobbled and dropped to the turf as both teams would retire to the locker room for the half with Jemison leading 13-0.
After failing to score at the end of the second half, Billingsley would not let a score slip through their hands again as the Bears would march 65 yards on the opening possession of the second half and would cap the scoring drive with a seven yard touch down pass from Callens to Cutler. With the PAT no good, Jemison led 13-6.
An 80-yard scoring drive that would end on a two yard touchdown run by Evans to push the Panthers out in front 19-6 with 3:34 to play in the third.
“We made to many mistakes, we get them stopped one time, a punt hits us another time and they get the ball when we should have had it in good field position,” Billingsley head coach Tyson McLean said.
A Billingsley turnover on the ensuing drive would cost the Bears dearly as a fumble would be scooped and scored by Sean Martin for a 35-yard touchdown return that would put the Panthers well out in front 32-6 with 11:37 to play.
“First off, hats off to coach McClean and Billingsley they done a great job game planning and give us fits in the first half,” Jemison Head Coach Van Clements said. “We had to make some adjustments in the second half, we give them a little gut punch and they come out and answered and I am proud of that. We have a few things to work on as we start Region play but our fights there and as long as we keep fighting like that we will be fine.”
Evans led the Panthers ground game with 164 yards on 23 carries with four touchdowns while Martin threw for 26 yards on three of seven passing.
Callens led the Billingsley offense with 82 rushing yards along with 68 yards passing along and a touchdown.