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Conversions, turnovers doom BHS

Maryville had 21 points before Devrin Young had 21 yards rushing.

Last season that would have told you the whole story of the perennial power Rebels’ matchup against Brad Taylor’s Bearden Bulldogs.

But at Bill Young Field in a televised showdown of unbeatens, Young and his 2010 Bulldogs showed grit in partially rallying from a 21-0 deficit.

It may have been an even bigger rally, except for a pair of nifty third-and-long runs from MHS quarterback Patton Robinette followed by a fourth-down fake punt.

The Rebels, as a result, pulled away from a 21-14 lead with a huge time of possession edge in the second half, and with five BHS turnovers mixed in left with a 34-14 victory.

“Too many mistakes offensively,” coach Taylor said, adding that in the second half, “Our defense came out and played unbelievable on first and second down, we just couldn't get off the field.”

Compared to a 38-0 loss at MHS last season while also entering that game at 5-0, Taylor said his current team “just competed better. We made about the same amount of mistakes.”

Taylor said his team’s overall play along the line of scrimmage on both sides “was probably good enough to win.”

Will Burns, BHS senior linebacker who had two minus-6-yard sacks and seven total tackles, said Robinette “was very good. It was heartbreaking getting to third-and-long, and fourth down, and them converting. It was tough.”

Young, senior All-state running back and recent Tennessee Vols commitment who was held at 88 yards rushing, said about the MHS defense, “they limited big plays, They were adjusting to how we were lined up.”

About BHS switching from its standard four-man defensive front to a three-man front with quicker personnel late in the second quarter, “Tonight it was working better than our base defense,” Taylor said. “We were going to stay with what worked.”

Individually on defense, “Will did a good job, and Drew [Williamson] obviously did a good job,” Taylor said. Willliamson, a senior linebacker, had three minus yardage or zero-yardage stops, eight solo and 10 total/

Senior LB Jerron Brown added seven solo tackles, 10 total, while senior linebacker Logan Candela landed five solo, eight total.

Trailing 21-0 with 9:29 left in the first half — two TDs set up by Bulldogs turnovers — Bearden rallied.

A Kyle Riemer 18-yard pass to Williamson started the BHS rally. Young added runs of 9 and 11, as Bearden reached the MHS 7.

On third-and-four, Riemer was hit as he threw what seemed to be a desperation wounded duck pass back to Young.

But the speedy, elusive senior took the floating pass at the 13, cut diagonally and avoided several tacklers into the end zone.

The first of kicker Ben Sisco's two eventual extra points made it 21-7 with 3:57 left in the half.

Bearden then capitalized on an MHS turnover within the first minute of the third quarter.

A fumbled exchange, recovered by safety Samuel Manuel at the Rebels 27, was turned into a 27-yard screen pass to receiver Stefon Stephens, who weaved his way for six. It was 21-14 with 11:10 left in the third.

After an exchange of punts, the Rebels ran 8:21 off the clock with a 19-play, 74-yard TD march while converting twice on fourth down, once on a fake punt pass, while Robinette avoided a third-down sack and gained 12 critical yards.

An interception set up the clinching Rebels touchdown.

A late fumble ended a promising BHS drive that featured receptions of 16 and 14 yards by Tyler Callaway, and a 16-yard Young run.

Running back Zach Messing added an 11-yard run.

Looking ahead to Farragut, Young said the loss “makes us hungrier. Farragut’s a great team as well, but if we limit mistakes and put this behind us, then watch out for the Bulldogs.”

Opening kickoff at FHS is 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 8.


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