Wells lifts Bogue Chitto over Loyd Star Hornets

Published 6:00 pm Sunday, August 21, 2011

BOGUE CHITTO – Quarterback Brandon Wellsheld the Possum Bowl Trophy in one hand and wiped sweat from hisface with the other Friday night. The symbol of 41-34 victory overLoyd Star’s Hornets was enjoyed by the Bobcats after Wells sparkedhis team to a comeback victory in the final three minutes of thegame, scoring the decisive touchdown with 54 seconds left toplay.

    Facing a crucial third down play at Loyd Star’s 15-yard line, Wellsrolled to his right looking for an open receiver, elected to runand crossed the goal line. Leading 39-34, BC Coach Gareth Sartinchose a 2-point conversion try and Wells lofted a pass to GermieMartin the corner of the end zone.

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    Asked about the winning TD, Wells said, “I was about to throw itbut coach said if I was open, to run it. I thank my offensive forhelping me. I want to give everybody credit for helping me besuccessful.”

    Wells, a slender 6-foot-1, 165-pound junior with cat-quick speed,drew his first starting assignment at quarterback and responded inwinning fashion. He rushed for 25 times for 170 yards and threetouchdowns, despite suffering severe muscle cramps caused by theoppressive heat.

    A sweat-soaked Troy Smith Field crowd, using hand-held politicalcandidate fans to move the humid air, watched the Bobcats roar to a27-7 lead before Loyd Star rallied with three, fourth-quarter TDs.The Bobcats capitalized on Loyd Star’s six turnovers, scoring offthree fumbles  in the firsthalf.

    Wells hooked up with Martin for the first touchdown of the seasonfrom 17 yards out. Loyd Star responded with a 2-yard plunge byRevis Butler and the go-ahead PAT kick by Cori Crowe.

    BC chalked up three unanswered TDs. Wells streaked 18 yards andfreshman kicker Cameron Price kicked the extra point.  Martin followed with a dazzling66-yard punt return for score and Colton McClendon scooped up afumble, returning it 80 yards to paydirt for a 27-7 advantage with3:49 left in the first half.

    “Brandon made a lot of big plays for us,” said Sartin. “It hurtwhen he went out with cramps. Colton came in and  did a good job at quarterback.”

    Quarterback was a question mark for the Bobcats because sophomoreveteran Brock Roberts was playing in a baseball World Series in NewYork. Two other BC baseball players are on the Mississippisquad.

    “It was a hard-fought game, just like I knew it would be,” saidSartin. “We didn’t give up when we got behind. Everybody playedhard.”

    In the third quarter, Sims ran 62 yards to paydirt, reducing thelead to 27-14. On the first play of the fourth quarter, Wellsplunged 1 yard for a TD, capping a 13-play, 70-yard drive. BC led33-14.

    A fumble recovery at BC’s 47-yard line led to a 21-yard TD run bySims. The Hornets used an onsides kickoff and recovered at BC’s 49.Two plays later, quarterback Seth Farmer raced 49-yards on anoption run. With 8:01 left to play, Loyd Star trailed 33-28.

    Another turnover, this time a blocked punt by Bradley Archer, wasrecovered at BC’s 12-yard line. Three plays later Farmer scored ona sneak. The PAT snap was mishandled and Loyd Star led 34-33 with3:55 remaining.

    Wells responded by directing a 7-play, 69-yard scoring drive tosecure the win.

    Loyd Star coach Randall Huffman said turnovers were decisive. “Wespotted them two scores to start with. You can’t lay the ball downand win.

    “The fumbles and dumb penalties hurt us,” Huffman added. “We foughtback but Bogue Chitto did what they had to do to win.”

    Loyd Star hosts Franklin County Friday night and Bogue Chittovisits the neighboring Enterprise Yellow Jackets.