Billingsley overpowers Verbena for win

Published 12:46 am Saturday, September 15, 2018

By Brandon Sumrall / Special to the Advertiser

Turnovers played a large role in a Class 1A, Region 4 matchup between the Billingsley Bears and Verbena Red Devils on Sept. 14, as the Bears cruised to a 48-8 win at home over the Red Devils.
The Bears would score early and often, as their first points of the game would come from their special teams unit just over two minutes into the game.

Carlton McCary would field a punt on the Red Devils’ opening drive at the Verbena 45 and would take it all the way for a touchdown to put the Bears up 7-0 early.
A scoreless possession by the Red Devils would see Verbena forced to punt. Billingsley would take over for their first offensive possession of the night at their own 31. A diving catch by Brisen Tatum would move the Bears out across near midfield, where quarterback Walker Motley would again connect with Tatum, this time for a 41-yard touchdown that would put Billingsley out in front 14-0.
The ensuing Verbena possession would see the first turnover of the night, as Cameron Cook would come up with a loose ball for the Bears.
One play later and Carlton McCary would find the end zone from 24-yards out and with Joseph Arington making the PAT, Billingsley would take a 21-0 lead.
It would not take long for the turnover bug to bite at the Red Devils once again, as the ensuing kickoff would be muffed and fallen on by the Bears’ Landon Messer. Five plays later and Motley would make it a 28-0 lead for Billingsley.
Another muffed ball kickoff by Verbena would this time fall in the hands of Tatum and would again set the Bears up first and 10 on the Red Devils’ side of the field. A fourth and goal at the 11 would see the Verbena defense keep the Bears out of the end zone and would turn the ball over on downs.
The turn in momentum would be short lived, as on a second and seven from their own 16-yard line the snap from center would fly over the head of quarterback Jacob Sanders.Sanders would field the ball in his own end zone while firing the ball downfield in order to avoid the safety, but unfortunately for Verbena the ball would be picked off by the Bears and returned by Tatum for another Billingsley touchdown.
With 7:24 remaining in the first half, Billingsley held a 35-0 lead. A quick four and out by the Red Devils would set the Bears up at their own 35-yard line where Taylor Arrington would break loose and scamper 58 yards down to the Verbena seven.One play later and Kyle Koser would go in for six more as Billingsley would take a 41-0 lead to the halftime break.
A quick three and out by Verbena to start the second half would set Billingsley up with their first possession of the second half at their
own 46.With a hot clock, and the second string offense taking the snaps, running back Randriquis McCary would find pay dirt from 8 yards out to make it a 48-0 Billingsley lead, let in the third quarter.
With 1:23 remaining, Jacob Sanders would connect with Dawson Rohrbough for a 22-yard touchdown reception for the Red Devils. With the two connecting once again for the two-point conversion, Verbena would break the shutout, but it would be the Bears that would come away with their second-straight region win 48-8.
“I am glad that we came out and competed for all four quarters. That was one thing that I challenged them this week to do,” said Billingsley head coach Marvin Morton. “We have been part of games where we played a good half. I challenged them this week to play good for all four quarters. I was very proud of the way that they played tonight.”
Motley finished the game going two for four through the air with a touchdown as well as one running. Taylor Arrington led the Billingsley ground game with 86 yards on five carries.
Sanders completed four passes on eight attempts for 82 yards and a touchdown for Verbena.