Friday, September 19, 2008

A Tomato Bowl For The Ages: Patrick Henry 14, Lee-Davis 13

What a game!

Going into the 49th Tomato Bowl, I believed we would see two evenly matched teams take the field, fitting to have a great game to cap off the 50th Anniversary celebration of Lee-Davis High School.

It was all that and more. In a thriller, Patrick Henry held on to defeat Lee-Davis, 14-13, winning its fourth consecutive Tomato Bowl.

This game was everything that last week's Atlee game was not. No fumbled snaps for Patrick Henry. Five total penalties. No turnovers. Successful fake punt. Big runs, big touchdown passes, defensive stands, quarterbacks pressured, you name it. And, in the end, it came down to three big plays.

First, the scoring. Both teams scored on their opening possession. Lee-Davis struck first on a 26-yard TD pass from QB Will Burton (9-22, 129 yds, 2 TDs) to WR T.J. Harvey. The Patriots respond with a quick, five play, 68 yard drive capped off by Adrian Cavanaugh's 10 yard scamper right up the middle for the tying score. It was tied at seven after one quarter.

In the 2nd, Patrick Henry took the lead, ending a drive with a one yard run, again by Cavanaugh, just breaking the plane of the goal, and Hayden Dyer's extra point made it 14-7, which was the score at halftime.

BIG PLAY #1---In the third quarter, Lee-Davis drove down to the Patriot six yard line. A snap from center went between the quarterback's legs, was recovered by running Tucker Walton, for a loss of ten yards. So, Lee-Davis had to settle for a 33 yard FG attempt by kicker C.J. Stevens, and it fell just short.

The 14-7 PH lead held steady. Into the fourth quarter we went, and I mentioned on the broadcast that the Patriots offense needed a sustained, time-consuming drive, saying you could only give Lee-Davis so many chances on offense before they would strike again.

Sure enough.

The Pats punt it away. Lee-Davis takes over at their own 49. One play later, it's a 14-13 game, after Burton hit T.J. Harvey again, this time on a slant pattern that Harvey took to the house for a 51-yard touchdown.

Extra point.......oh, wait a minute.

BIG PLAY #2---Lee-Davis decides to go for two. They fall one yard short of the goal line, and instead of a possible tie, going for the lead failed, and it remained 14-13.

Yet, Patrick Henry could not get a drive going to keep the clock moving and Lee-Davis had one more chance. And on fourth down.....

BIG PLAY #3---Burton's 22nd and final pass was long, down the right side, heading for, once again, T.J. Harvey. The pass held in the air just long enough, flew about two yards shorter than Lee-Davis wanted to, and gave DB B.J. Moss the second he needed to block the ball, and help secure the victory.

If the pass is half a second quicker and three yards further, Harvey catches it in stride and the Confederates celebrate a miracle comeback victory, the storybook ending to a golden anniversary.

Instead, the Patriots run out the clock and they return to Ashland 2-1. Tonight, the exclamation of "whew" heard from the PH faithful was not "Whew, we almost gave the game away", as was the case after last week's Atlee game. Tonight it was, "Whew, what a game!!!!"

Brandon Cash's only completed pass was a shovel pass to Cavanaugh that went for 40 yards, but he did carry the ball 22 times for 105 yards. Cavanaugh added 15 carries, 69 yards, and two touchdown runs to his one reception.

Lee-Davis' running game was held in check tonight. Tucker Walton, who carried for 127 yards against Hermitage two weeks earlier, carried nine times for only 14 yards. Burton carried seven times for 37 yards.

Lee-Davis now enters Capital District play a disappointing 1-2, but knowing full well they can compete with anyone. Meanwhile, the Patriots head home to open the Colonial District campaign against J.R. Tucker, hoping to make it 3-1.


--Two possible injury situations. Both lineman Michael Woodburn and two-way starter (and freshman) D'vante Derricott were helped off the field in the fourth quarter, each not putting pressure on an ankle. We'll try to get an update as soon as possible.

--Dwight Sweat was not suited up and did not play tonight.

Talk to you next Friday night from the home field in Ashland, 7:05pm on WHAN!! :)

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