The Bulloch Academy Gators scored the most points they have scored this season, and it was still just barely enough to outdistance Trinity as the two teams had an old-fashioned shootout Friday night in Dublin. The Gators defense was able to make at least one stand as they stopped Trinity on a 2-point conversion with less than a minute to go and the Gators hung on to win 57-55.
“Well, we went to Trinity for a football game and a track meet broke out,” said Gator coach Aaron Phillips. “It may have been the worst defensive football game I have ever been a part of with 112 total points. Offensively I don’t think we ran a play that went for less than eight or nine yards. Hats off to our offense but we have some work to do on defense.”
The Gators actually led 42-25 at the half and were held to only two scores in the second half. Meanwhile the Crusader offense caught fire scoring 30 second half points. Tied at 49-49 the Gators scored their final touchdown on a Bryson Scott run with two minutes left in the game. BA went for two and converted on a Reid Clifton run to make it 57-49. Trinity was able to march downfield and scores with 51 seconds remaining, but the Gators held on the 2-point conversion and were able to recover the ensuing on sides kick.
“We made all of our extra-point kicks, but we went for two after our final touchdown because we just didn’t have confidence we could stop them,” said Phillips. “They were able to score there at the end and thankfully we finally stepped up and made a play on defense stopping their conversion. One thing we did to help them get back in the game was turn the ball over and we have to prevent that from happening. We did do a lot better in that area than we did two weeks ago in Augusta.”
The Gators rushed for over 600 yards and did not complete a pass, or punt. BA had three backs go over 100 yards rushing with Bryson Scott, Isaiah Smart and Reid Clifton all surpassing the century mark. Scott and Luke Willoughby had three touchdowns each in the game. Trinity remained in the game thanks in part to the play of quarterback Jim Coleman who rushed for over 250 yards and threw for 150 yards coming up with the majority of the Crusader points.
“If it wasn’t for that kid, we would have won that one pretty easily,” said Phillips. “He is one heck of a player and we just couldn’t seem to do anything with him. We have to get back to work this week and figure some things out on defense. There is no such thing as an ugly victory. I will take this win any time.”
The Gators improve to 2-1 on the season and will next travel to Augusta Prep next Friday.