It’s been a long time coming, but the Long County Blue Tide football team have won multiple games in a season for the first time since 2015.
They dominated the Butler Bulldogs 46-0 Friday, Sept. 10 to win their second game of the season.
The Tide started out on offense, a more commonplace thing for the team these days, and opened from their own 31.
They wasted little time getting things going with junior Joe Saddler breaking open a 31-yard run into Butler territory.
Just a few plays later, sophomore Ahmari Douglas broke his way into the endzone from two yards out to give his team an early 6-0 lead.
The defense stood up and forced a punt on a three and out and the ever-dangerous senior leader Dwayne Rowe was back deep to return.
He caught another dangerous punt in traffic, broke one tackle and was off to the races.
He zipped down the Butler sideline for a 75-yard punt return.
The two-point conversion gave his team the 14-0 lead midway through the first quarter.
The defense came up strong again and forced another punt as the ball bounced down to the Butler 36.
Two plays into the next drive, the Tide did something they haven’t done much this year: throw the ball.
Sophomore Zion Ervin dropped back to pass and looked down the field for Tay Brown.
The pass was tipped by a Bulldog defender into the waiting arms of senior tight end Co’tomi Cooper, who pranced into the endzone to make the score 22-0 after the two-point conversion.
Once again, the defense continued to dominate and it came in the form of another big play by Rowe.
The Butler quarterback looked down the field for the first time on the night and found a receiver, but Rowe stepped in front of the pass and returned the interception all the way inside the Butler 20.
The first quarter came to an end with the Tide settling at the one-yard line. Saddler capped off the short drive with his first touchdown of the season to make the score 28-0.
The defense forced another punt as the Tide took over at the Butler 44.
However, they made their first big mistake of the night as the snap was fumbled and the Bulldogs recovered at their own 42.
It did not matter much though as the defense forced a turnover on downs at midfield two minutes later.
The Tide went on their longest drive of the game, five and a half minutes, before Rowe capped off the drive with his first offensive touchdown of the season from 15 yards out to give his team the 36-0 lead at the half.
Both coaches agreed to a running clock for the second half, the first time the Tide have had that in their favor in three years.
A high snap for the Bulldogs’ offense on the second play of the second half led to the ball bouncing into the endzone.
The Butler quarterback picked up the ball and heaved it down the field to the waiting arms of an ineligible lineman.
The Tide were awarded two points on a safety due to the penalty occurring in the endzone.
Time ticked away quickly as the Tide continued to stifle the Bulldogs with several sacks in the second half.
They capped off their scoring with a six-yard dive from Josiah Ansorena-Smith, his first touchdown of the season to make the score 46-0.
With the win, the Tide are now 2-2 and 2-0 at home.
They will look to get their first road win next week as they travel to play Jeff Davis.
The Yellow Jackets are 4-0 on the season and are coming off a 14-7 over Tattnall County, a region foe for the Blue Tide.
The Tide will be back at home on Friday, Sept. 24 for their final non-region game of the year against Frederica Academy, which will be their homecoming game.