Despite a two touchdown performance by running back E.J. Crawford, the Long County football team fell in its season opener Friday, losing to Island’s High School 21-14.
Playing in front of the hometown fans in Ludowici, the Blue Tide fell behind 7-0 on the first play from scrimmage, after Greg Pinkney picked off a pass from Long County quarterback Dominick Roschmann and rambled 52 yards for the score. The Blue Tide offense continued to struggle, but fortunately its defense played very well.
However on their fifth series of the half, Long County’s offense stormed back to tie the game up when Roschmann hit Crawford for a 45-yard touchdown.
Long County’s defense continued to play stout and in the third period Islands had the ball at their own 10 yard line.
On the first play from scrimmage the Blue Tide defense came up with a huge play when Dazon Mills and Quentin Facen forced a fumble that Long County was able to recover deep in Sharks territory. On the next play the Blue Tide offensive line opened a nice hole and Crawford pounded the ball up the middle for a 2 yard touchdown, giving the Blue Tide a 14-7 lead.
Following this score the Long County offense wasn’t able to move the ball and had to punt on their next three possessions. Though the Sharks offense also struggled, in the fourth period they were able to score on two of their three possessions to seal the victory 21-14.
After the game, first year head coach J.T. Pollock said he was proud of his team’s effort and that his players played hard.
“The kids fought, it was a tough loss, but we were able to overcome some adversity,” Pollock said. “I wanted to see if the kids could do this, and they did, and I’m proud of that.”
The coach also said that the Blue Tide team never gave up and that was something to build on.
“They didn’t hang their heads and they kept fighting right up to the end,” he said. “You want to see that from your team.”
Even though he praised his team, Pollock the game was one Long should not have lost.
“Those are the games we have to find a way to win, and not find a way to lose,” Pollock said.
With the loss Long County fell to 0-1, while Islands improved their record to 1-1.
On Friday the Blue Tide host Jeff Davis County (1-0) who are coming off a big 48-7 win over Atkinson County.
That game is in Ludowici with kickoff scheduled for 7:30 p.m.