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OCSS crown a ‘perfect’ fit for flawless South Fulton

OCSS crown a ‘perfect’ fit for flawless South Fulton
OCSS crown a ‘perfect’ fit for flawless South Fulton

Lake Road’s Jake Jones tries to put the ball across the goalline with South Fulton’s Kyle Watkins (left) and Ryan Prince making the tackle during Thursday’s Rebel Bowl.
Maybe the powers that be at the Obion County School System should consider renaming the Rebel Bowl the Red Devil Bowl.
On Thursday, South Fulton took the OCSS’s top prize in middle school football for the second straight season, while completing a perfect 9-0 season as they drubbed Lake Road 36-6 in the league’s championship game.
The victory, which is the most lopsided in the 14-year history of the Rebel Bowl, was powered greatly by what South Fulton head coach Jeremy McFarland labeled a complete team effort that the squad prepared for in the spring.
“By far, this is our best game as a team all season in my eyes,” McFarland said afterwards. “We set two goals in the preseason way back in May. One was to win the Rebel Bowl again and the other was to go undefeated.
“We knew we had a great nucleus of eighth-graders coming back and it was just a matter of whether we could stay on the ball and keep our focus, which we did and tonight is the culmination of those efforts.”
Offensively, Red Devil fullback J.P. Fowler earned the game’s Most Valuable Offensive Player plaque as he totaled 108 yards on 11 rushes. Fowler also hauled in a receiving touchdown and he was key in moving the ball downfield during the entire game for SF.
“We knew we weren’t going to be able to run outside as we’d like,” McFarland said. “So, we decided to take what we could get up the middle a lot in the first and second quarter and that in turn opened up what we could do on the edges later in the game.”
For Lake Road, Jake Jones was lauded as his team’s top offensive performer during the loss. Jones totaled 75 yards on a dozen carries with 69 of those coming in the second half.
On the other side of the ball, Khiry Lewis, who picked off General quarterback Dusty Gumm twice within a span of 30 seconds in the second quarter, earned the top defensive player plaque for SF, while Hunter Allen took that award for LR with a game-high nine tackles.
Early on, Lake Road (4-2) looked competitive as they held the Red Devils to just a pair of touchdowns through the game’s first 15 minutes and trailed 14-0.
The first of those South Fulton touchdowns came by way of an 11-yard pass to Fowler from Jaquay Garmon in the first with Tevaris James taking in the two-point conversion.
Later, with two minutes remaining in the first half, James danced in from nine yards out to put the Redmen up 14-0.
With the game still in reach, the final minute of the first quarter turned out to be extremely damaging for the Generals.
Lewis picked off a Gumm aerial and he took it back 38 yards to paydirt to put South Fulton up 22-0 with 57 seconds remaining before intermission.
After the ensuing kickoff, LR went to the air again and Lewis took down another Gumm pass on first down to shift all of the momentum into the Red Devils’ favor.
“We knew coming in we had to go for the big play and we knew we’d have to gamble to stick with them,” Lake Road head coach Shawn Johnson said. “We gambled twice there with the pass and ultimately it cost us.”
In the second half, Khiry Lewis broke free on the outside with a 60-yard scamper to the endzone on a reverse and Garmon took in the two-pointer to put SF up 30-0 midway through the third quarter.
The Generals’ drive to paydirt began late in the third quarter and it continued into the fourth.
During that 11 play, 62-yard march, Jones had his number called eight times for a total of 54 yards as he set up a one-yard dive across the goal line by Dallas Mathis at the 6:22 mark.
The final score of the game came later in the fourth as Garmon hooked up with James for an 18-yard touchdown pass.
Defensively, James led the way for the Redmen with eight stops, while Fowler had an interception and forced fumble to go with his seven tackles.
For LR, Levi Stough made seven stops and Nick Willoughby totaled six takedowns.
After the game, South Fulton’s Marcus Wade, Alex Kopriva, Ryan Prince, Fowler, James, Garmon and Lewis were all named to the OCSS glitter unit.
Meanwhile, Lake Road’s Dakota Lewis, Anthony Rob-erson, Dalton Edmaiston, Gumm, Mathis and Allen each were named to the All-OCSS team.
Sports reporter Kenneth Coker can be contacted by e-mail at kcoker@ucmessenger.com.

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