Prep Football: Bulldogs fall short in Mount Airy
Just as Thomasville had something positive to cheer about Friday evening, Mount Airy marched right down the field to ruin the mood.
The Bulldogs cut a 16-point deficit in half early in the fourth quarter, but the Granite Bears responded with a 74-yard drive that resulted in a touchdown, icing a 22-8 nonconference victory.
With eight minutes remaining in the game, workhorse tailback Shay Wilson scored his second touchdown for the Bears on a run over the left side from a yard out. The 16-0 lead certainly looked safe with the Thomasville offense having trouble for a second straight week. But junior D.J. Spann made a spectacular individual effort to rapidly respond to the Mount Airy score 21 seconds later. On the first play from scrimmage after the kickoff, quarterback Shai Wise found Spann near the sideline at midfield. Maneuvering his way around a couple defenders, Spann cut the ball back inside and outran the Bear secondary to put the Bulldogs on the scoreboard for the first time this season. Wise completed the two-point conversion to Christian Young to make it 16-8 with 7:42 remaining.
The Bears got the ball on their own 26 and the THS defense needed one more stop to give the offense a chance. They were close to getting it as Mount Airy faced a third down needing seven yards from the 29. Calm under pressure, quarterback Logan Holder hooked up with Caleb Horton for a 19-yard pickup that moved the chains out to midfield and kept the clock running.
The Bulldogs would get one more chance to get their paws on the ball. With the Bears deep in their territory at the 11, the football was knocked out of the hands of Davontae Dobson. Mount Airy made the recovery and Andrew Jones rushed the ball into the end zone two plays later.
An interception allowed the Bears to run out the clock.
“There are no cupcakes on this schedule,” said THS head coach Wes Mattera. “That is a good 1-A football team with great tradition.”
In the first half, the Bears had a short field to work with on their second possession and scored on just two plays as Wilson plowed in from 11 yards out.
On the ensuing kickoff, Tyquan Anderson took off from the 4 and had the end zone within his sight as he sprinted down the near sideline. He was tripped up by the final defender at the 17. The tackle proved to be a big one. Thomasville netted only five yards on three rushes and decided to go for it on fourth-and-5 at the 12. The handoff went to Josh Scott, but he was met instantly by Sihem Smith for a loss and turnover on downs.
“We didn't execute very well in the first half,” said Mattera. “We felt like we had an advantage in the kicking game and we did by all the returns that we had. We just did not capitalize there to get the momentum back.”
Robert Brown completed the first half scoring with a 35-yard field goal as time expired in the opening quarter.