Maplesville shuts out Keith in region win

Published 11:16 pm Friday, September 21, 2018

By J.R. Tidwell / Editor

A week after falling to region foe Linden on the road, the Maplesville Red Devils came home and returned to form with a 57-0 shutout victory over the Keith Bears on Sept. 21.

The Red Devils’ offense rarely had trouble finding traction, and the defense recovered three fumbles and forced a safety while keeping the Bears on their own side of the field the majority of the night.

“We challenged the players all week in specific plays to finish blocks and finish tackles,” said Maplesville head coach Brent Hubbert. “Our defense needs to get back and play like its been known to play. I thought we played good in spurts. The first three games we played good, but we challenged them this week saying are we really playing on a level you have learned to play and seen play here. The kids all agreed that we’re not there, and that’s where we have to work to get back to.”

Ryan Morrow opened up the scoring for MHS with an 11-yard touchdown run early in the first quarter.

Jackson Abbott punched in a keeper on the goal line to make it 14-0 Maplesville near the end of the opening quarter.

Christin Brown made a 14-yard rush and score just a minute into the second period. Timothy Bradley forced a fumble that was recovered by Tristen Thetford, and Abbott then connected with Thetford on a 12-yard touchdown pass that gave the Red Devils a 28-0 lead after Abbott again found Thetford on the conversion.

Maplesville pinned Keith deep in its own territory on the Bears’ next possession, and a bad snap led to Thetford sacking quarterback Jared Evans in the end zone for a safety.

MHS went up 36-0 on a 6-yard run for a score by Brown with just under five minutes remaining in the opening half.

Keith picked off Abbott with 1:55 left in the second quarter, but remained unable to move the ball on offense, so the scoreline held at 36-0 at the break.

Maplesville wasted no time adding its burgeoning lead in the second half.

Keith turned the ball over on downs at its own 20-yard line on its first possession of the third quarter, and the Red Devils scored on their first offensive play of the half when Jakavian Mckenzie took a screen pass from Abbott the 20 yards into the end zone.

On the Bears’ next possession Gage Mims recovered a fumble at the Keith 20, and once again the Maplesville scored on its next offensive play.

Morrow scampered into the end zone from 20 yards out to put MHS up 50-0 with 4:37 remaining in the third.

A fumble on a muffed punt by Keith was recovered by Joseph Pettigrew, which set up the last Red Devil score of the evening when Latrell Wilson punched in a run from 2 yards out early in the fourth quarter.

Maplesville (3-1, 2-1 Class 1A Region 3) will travel to face Reeltown on Sept. 28.

“It’s a big game,” Hubbert said. “We played Fultondale and Linden, now we get to play a good Reeltown team. It’s an excitement. When we get to play teams of that caliber, it helps our program.”