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Late field goal lifts BC over Enterprise

Resuming after a two-year hiatus due to scheduling conflicts,the Bogue Chitto-Enterprise football rivalry picked up where itleft off Friday night with the visiting Bobcats taking ahard-fought, come-from-behind 9-8 win over the Fighting YellowJackets in a game filled with controversy as Garrett Wallace kickeda 24-yard field goal with 5.5 seconds left to play.

Numerous inadvertent whistles and inexplicable calls from theofficials helped mire what was an otherwise exciting defensivebattle.

The Bobcats (1-1) trailed Enterprise 6-0 at the half and weredown 8-0 going into the fourth quarter before mounting theircomeback and picking up a last-minute field goal to steal thevictory. In his postgame talk to his players, Bogue Chitto coachGareth Sartin said, “Nobody outworks us. We did a great job ofcoming back in the fourth quarter. We had plenty of chances toquit, but we didn’t.”

It appeared early in the game that the Jackets (0-1) would havean easy go of it. After a Travis Leggett fumble recovery ended theBobcats’ opening drive, Enterprise marched 59 yards in 14 plays totake the first lead. Quarterback Cody Brister tossed a six-yardscoring pass to Brad Prather for the score with 1:19 remaining.Lance Spring’s PAT kick was no good leaving a 6-0 game after oneperiod of play.

Neither team could mount any appreciable offense in the secondquarter as the half ended with the same 6-0 Enterprise advantage.Bogue Chitto had its drives ended with a punt, fumble at the end ofthe half while Enterprise was forced into two punts. The Jacketswere also stymied by four penalties in the quarter for 40yards.

The Bobcats continued to shoot themselves in the foot in thethird quarter with yet another fumble. With 1:43 left in thequarter, a high snap into their own end zone allowed the hosts totackle Javier Gee for a safety and an 8-0 lead. A fumble byEnterprise with 8.7 seconds to play in the quarter gave the ball toBogue Chitto going into the fourth quarter.

Controversy first made its presence known just over a minuteprior to the safety. After moving to the Bogue Chitto 48-yard line,the Jackets were forced to punt and then appeared to recover amuffed catch at the visitor’ 19-yard line. The officials firstindicated the Bobcats had in fact retained possession beforeultimately calling for another punt.

Taking advantage of the Enterprise miscue, the Bobcats needed 12plays to reach paydirt, with Gee doing the honors from one yard outwith 6:54 remaining in the game. A failed two-point conversion runby Gee left Enterprise with an 8-6 lead.

The Bobcats were forced into a punting situation early in thedrive, but a six-yard run by Gee on a fake punt gave Bogue Chitto afirst down and allowed the drive to continue.

Controversy returned to the game with just under five minutes togo when the Leggett appeared to recover a Bobcat fumble and race 42yards for what would have been a game-sealing touchdown. However,the officials ruled the runner down and allowed Bogue Chitto tohold onto the ball in what proved to be the winning drive.

Following the call, the Bobcats used seven more plays to reachthe Enterprise six-yard line. With time winding down and notimeouts remaining, the Bogue Chitto field goal team raced onto thefield. Wallace calmly set himself and split the uprights from 24yards out with 5.5 on the clock giving his team a 9-6 lead. A keyplay in the drive was a 39-yard pass from Gee to Colton McClendon,one of only two passes in the game for Bogue Chitto.

After returning the ensuing kickoff to their own 45-yard line,the stunned Jackets had one remaining chance to win, but a Bristerto Aaron Prather pass could get the hosts only down to the 20-yardline as time expired.

“In the fourth quarter, they (Bobcats) were in better shape thanwe were,” said Enterprise head coach Wayne Rogers. “As bad as weplayed and as bad as the officiating was, when it came crunch timewe didn’t make the plays.

“At this point, the Yellow Jacket football team will have to dosome soul searching,” Rogers added. “It ain’t me, it’s we.”

Byron Kersee led the Bogue Chitto offense with 146 yard rushingon 14 carries. Carl Green picked up 26 yards while Gee had 25,including a touchdown run.

The Bobcats picked up 12 first downs on the night. The werepenalized three times for 20 yards and lost four fumbles. Geepunted once for 32 yards.

On defense, Bogue Chitto was led by Brothern’s 12 tackles.Kersee and Tyler Saucier both added eight stops with Saucier alsohaving a fumble recovery.

For the Jackets, Brister had 14 carries for 42 yards. BradPrather added 31 yards on seven carries while Josh Nations totedthe ball five times for 27 yards.

Brister completed six of nine passes for 71 yards and atouchdown. Aaron Prather hauled in three passes for 35 yards.Jarrett Todd had two receptions for 30 yards. Brad Prather had asix-yard touchdown catch.

On defense, Leggett led the way for Enterprise with 17 tackles.Kevin Brizzard added nine tackles while Jake Walker had eight.Leggett, Todd, Nations and Brad Prather all had fumble recoveriesand Leggett had a sack.

Both teams take to the road Friday for their next games asEnterprise travels cross-county to visit the West Lincoln Bears.Bogue Chitto heads to Copiah County to visit the Wesson Cobras.