Bulldogs take advantage of Devil mistakes in victory
Tim Sharp , Enquirer Correspondent
A fumbled opening kickoff was a harbinger of things to come for the Falkville Blue Devils (5-5), as they turned the ball over six times and surrendered a safety in a 20-13 home loss to the Priceville Bulldogs (6 -4) Friday night.
The Bulldogs failed to gain a first down following the turnover, throwing incomplete on fourth down to give the Devils the ball for the first time. Falkville was also ineffective on their first possession and punted to end their drive.
Priceville started the scoring on its second possession. Eli Allen scrambled for three first downs and Will Stevens completed 2-of-3 passes for 36 yards on a 13-play, 74-yard drive, including a 30-yard touchdown strike to Rand Hutchinson on fourth-and-12 to finish the drive. Steven Lindsey blocked the extra point, and the Bulldogs led 6-0.
That would prove to be all of the scoring for the half. Priceville would mount one other serious threat. Moving 73 yards in 12 plays, its drive came up short when a scramble by Will Stevens failed to convert on fourth down in the red zone.
After receiving the second half kickoff, the Bulldogs struck quickly. Allen ran the ball twice for 42 yards and a touchdown 1:03 into the quarter. The two-point conversion failed and Priceville led 12-0.
Falkville then responded with its first scoring drive of the night. Jonathon McNatt was 4-of-4 passing as the Devils moved 58 yards in nine plays. Lindsey brought down an 11-yard pass from McNatt in the back of the end zone to score for Falkville. A botched snap lead to a failed two-point conversion try by the Devils and the score stood at 12-6.
Priceville punted to end their next possession and Falkville took over after a touchback. On the second play from scrimmage, Lonnie Sutton intercepted a McNatt pass and returned it to the Falkville 7-yard line. Three plays later Stevens sneaked it in from 1 yard out for a touchdown. The two-point conversion failed and the Bulldogs led 18-6.
Priceville would not gain another first down on the night. However, interceptions by Sutton, Kyle Bunnell and Will Halbrooks and a safety would end the next four Falkville drives.
On what would be their final possession of the night, the Devils took over with two minutes to play. McNatt scrambled for 28 yards before completing a pass to Lindsey, who evaded two defenders and raced 37 yards for a touchdown with 1:26 left. Nathan Riggins kicked the extra point and Falkville trailed 20-13.
The Bulldogs recovered the ensuing onside kick and kneeled to kill the remainder of the time and secure the victory.
McNatt was 8-of-17 passing for 101 yards and two touchdowns for the Devils. Steven Lindsey caught five passes for 91 yards and two touchdowns.
Allen with 87 yards on 11 carries led the Bulldogs. Stevens added 84 yards passing on five completions and rushed 13 times for 48 yards.
Falkville travels to Addison for the first round of the Class 2A state playoffs tonight.