Dogs come close to a comeback
mchs falls to elbert county 29-22
By Nick Nunn
The Bulldogs suffered a heartbreaking defeat at the hands of Elbert County last week 29-22 when they weren’t able to pull off a second-half comeback against the Blue Devils.
The Bulldogs won the coin toss at the beginning of the game, but decided to defer until the second half.
Elbert County’s first drive was held back by Morgan County. They had to punt early, but the Bulldogs fumbled the ball on the first play of their drive, and the Blue Devils recovered on their own 12-yard line.
Because of the good field position, Elbert County was able to score a few plays later.
Morgan County got the ball back and made it all the way to field goal range late in the first quarter, but Campbell Harrison missed the uprights.
Thanks to a couple of big runs, the Blue Devils were able to score early in the second quarter, making the score 13-0.
During their next possession, the Bulldogs fumbled the ball again in their own territory, allowing Elbert County to start a drive on the 41-yard line and score just a few plays later.
The Blue Devils went for a two-point conversion and got it, making the score 21-0.
Morgan County’s next possession lasted almost six minutes, but they made it all the way to the endzone for their first touchdown of the night with a 10-yard pass play to Michael Gray in the endzone.
Although there was only two minutes left in the first half, Elbert County was able to score, advancing down the field with enough time to get another touchdown and two-point conversion.
At halftime, the Bulldogs had a long way to go, trailing behind the Blue Devils 29-7.
Morgan County came out strong in the third quarter, scoring on the first drive with a 13-yard touchdown run by Andrew Couch.
“Andrew has had a big game almost every week,” said Head Coach Bill Malone.
“It seems like every time we call his number offensively, something big has happened.”
The remaining eight minutes of the quarter were fought without either team scoring again.
Early in the fourth quarter, Morgan County had the ball, but a halfback pass attempt by Michael Gray was intercepted by a Blue Devil player.
Sensing the urgency, the defense came out on the next play and forced an Elbert County fumble, which was recovered by Carter Shultz.
The offense drove down the field, urged on by the cheering from the Morgan County fans and scored a touchdown on a six-yard carry by Couch.
Knowing that they might need to pull off a two-point conversion to tie the game down the line, Morgan County went for two points after the touchdown and were able to make it with a pass to Shultz in the end zone.
With only a little more than eight minutes left in the fourth quarter, the Bulldogs were only trailing by seven points, 29-22.
Elbert County made some small gains to start their next drive, but Couch turned the ball around by intercepting a pass and bringing it back into the Blue Devils’ territory.
At this point, the fans in the Morgan County stands erupted and sustained a level of energy that lasted the rest of the drive.
“The loyal fans who came and watched us play were up and making noise,” remembered Coach Malone. “There’s something to be said about home-field advantage, and we fed off the noise that was coming out of the stands.”
The Bulldogs overcame a fourth-and one to keep the drive going with a 22-yard pass to Couch, which got Morgan County all the way to the 11-yard line, but they fumbled the ball on the next play at the four-yard line with fewer than three minutes left in the game.
Despite the Bulldogs’ best efforts in the second half, Elbert was able to retain possession of the ball until time was up, ending the game with a final score of 29-22.
Coach Malone’s description of the feeling on the field among the players was clear from halftime: that they would win the game.
“My halftime spiel was, ‘Guys, one of two things is going to happen. You’re going to look back at this game for a long time and say that this is the one that shouldn’t have got away from us but it did or you’re going to say that this was the biggest comeback in modern-day Morgan County History.’ And we just about pulled that off.”
“I was so proud of the effort of the kids and the ability to move the ball and score as well as the ability to stop them and not let them score any more points,” said Coach Malone.
“We knew in the first half that we could beat them, and the way that we were able to perform in the second half erased quite a bit of that terrible feeling we had coming in at halftime.”
Unfortunately for the team, there just wasn’t enough time in the game to complete the comeback that they had so admirably begun.
Next week, the Bulldogs take on the East Jackson Eagles. Morgan County is hoping to be the seventh team of the season to beat the Eagles, who have a 0-6 record this year.
The game will take place in Commerce at 7:30 Friday evening.
“Pink Out” for Homecoming
MCHS will be having a “Pink Out” for the Homecoming game against Franklin County on October 26th to support Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Additionally, the school is pre-selling shirts for the event through Jodie McMichael and Penny Moore.
The shirts cost $20 and need to be ordered before 3 p.m. this Friday, the 19th. To order the shirts, contact one of these sellers at either Jodie.email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Checks can be dropped off at Madison Car Care or mailed to Jodie McMichael at 1091 Madelyn Lane, Madison, GA 30650.
Ordered shirts will be available for pickup at the JV game Thursday before the Homecoming game or Friday before the varsity game.
Printed in the October 18, 2012 edition