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Long tops defensive struggle
Sophomore Jaquarius Harrison scored the first TD on Friday, and the Blue Tide went on to beat Lanier County, 16-12, in Lakeland. - photo by Mikee Riddle

After a 45-minute delay in Lakeland because of lightning, the Long County High School football team jumped out to an 8-0 lead Friday and held on to beat Lanier County in a tough, non-region game.
In the first quarter, running back Jaquarius Harrison scored the first touchdown of the game, followed by quarterback Vanda Vereen Jr’s. 2-point conversion.
The Bulldogs bounced back in the second period to score but couldn’t convert the conversion, so Long County led by two at the half.
The third quarter was scoreless. In the final period, Vereen ran in a touchdown, and then fullback Armando Toledo dove across the goal for the 2-point conversion, putting the Blue Tide up by 10.
Lanier scored late, but again was unable to convert, making the final score 16-12.
“It was a total team effort,” Blue Tide head coach Ron Flott said. “Although we made some mistakes on both sides of the ball, the kids gave a great effort, had a good attitude and were able to finish the game. I’m real proud of all of them.”
Flott said the mistakes included blown assignments on offense and containment given up on defense.
“We still got a lot of work to do on our fundamentals. We’re still a young team. On defense, we got to work on some things and on offense, we haven’t got any returning starters in skill positions …” the coach said. “The good thing is that most of the mistakes that we made were hustling mistakes. We just got to get the kids in the right place on the field.”
With the win, Long County’s record is 1-0. Lanier County fell to 1-1.
This week, the schedule gets a lot tougher for the Blue Tide. They take on the No. 10 team in the state, according to MaxPreps, when Benidictine Military School comes to town. The Cadets also are coming off of a 41-7 win over Effingham County. Friday night’s game will be the first Region 2-AA contest for both BC and Long County.
Pick up Friday’s paper for a preview and to find out which Long County player was selected as this week’s player of the week.

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