The last two times the Bradwell Institute Tigers and Long County Blue Tide football teams have met, the games have come down to the wire. The third ever meeting between the two teams did not have the same result as they Hinesville team traveled to Ludowici and walked out with a 34-0 victory, their second straight win on the year.
The Tigers were coming off a 42-8 win over Tattnall County, another Region 2-AAA team struggling this year, last week and the Tide were looking to finally write a one in their win column. Both teams came out swinging early and it looked like the game would rival the 2016 22-22 tie and the 2017 10-7 Bradwell win.
The Tide, in a new look offense that seemed to baffle the Tigers, moved methodically down the field led by running back Kendall Lovett and quarterback Treyon Davis, who seemed to have taken more of a running back role himself.
The Tide picked up a fourth down dep in their own territory and continued to move down the field and got to the 50 before having to punt to the Tigers. The snap went way over the head of punter Jacob Seal, but the Tigers were busy setting up a return to realize the mistake, allowing Seal to get a short punt off and giving the Tigers the ball at their own 43.
The Tigers were looking to get on the board first as they pushed into Tide territory. They faced a third and short from the 35, but running back Kevin Harris was swallowed up in the backfield by Travon Phillips, forcing the Tigers to attempt a fourth down and seven.
Quarterback Vencent Gilbert seemed to have enough room to run for the first down, but he slid just a few yards too early, giving Long County the ball at their own 35 on downs.
The Tide tried something they had not done much of all year as Lovett took the shotgun snap and looked for a man down field. He found a wide open Dazon Mills who raced down inside the Bradwell 25 for a big 43-yard gain.
Long County had all the momentum at the time and looked to get in the endzone, but cornerback Marquise Leach made a big play on third down to tackle Lovett in the backfield, which forced the Tide to try a 37-yard field goal to start the second quarter. Chris Garcia’s attempt from the left hash stayed left and the Tigers took over from there.
The missed field goal did not affect the Tide’s defense however as Gilbert could not get away from Quanielius Bacon on a third and medium. Bacon stripped Gilbert on the sack and the Tide took over at the Tiger 32.