The Macon County High School Tigers defeated the Clay County Bulldogs in the final game of the 2014 season.
It brings the Tiger record to 5-5 on the season and earns Macon a trip to the 4A playoffs for the first time since 2011.
The Tigers scored first in the contest. Seth Carlisle hit Dale Turner on a swing pass for a 22 yard touchdown and Brandon Noles added the extra point and Macon led 7-0 10:07 into the first quarter. Clay County came back and scored but missed the 2 pt conversion to make the score 7-6 with 3:56 left in the period. With 7:05 left in the first half, Seth Carlisle scored from 4 yards and Noles adds the PAT to make the score 14-6. Carlisle would tack on another score from 49 yards out and Noles missed the PAT to leave the score 20-6 at halftime.
After almost two quarters without a first down, Clay County mounted another drive. With 10:00 left in the 3rd period the Bulldogs cut the lead to 20-12. The Tigers were dealt a disappointing blow as Senior running back Dale Turner injured his knee and is doubtful for the remainder of the season. Filling in for Turner, Matt Austin scored from 5 yards out with 7:53 left in the game. Noles missed the PAT and the final score is Macon 26 Clay County 12.
For the game Seth Carlisle was 9 of 18 passing for 99 yards and 1TD and rushed for 126 yards and 2TDs on 16 carries. Matt Austin had 13 rushes for 103 yards, Dale Turner had 4 rushes for 32 yards and 1 reception for 22 yards and 1TD, and Tanner Lowhorn had 8 rushes for 38 yards. Brandon Noles had 3 catches for 32 yards, Tyler Carlisle had 3 catches for 25 yards, Trace McPherson had 1 catch for 12 yards, and Matt Austin had 1 catch for 8 yards. Tyler Swindle led all tacklers with 8 stops. Seniors Brandon Graves and Gage Carr had 6 tackles as well as 5 stops for Senior Jessie Gregory. Braxton Crawford, Marshall Avera, and Tanner Lowhorn had 3 tackles each for the game.
For a number of young men and women, this would be the last time they would take the field in high school. The Class of 2015 features: Managers Bethany Brown, Brittany Brown, and Samantha Tyler, Band Members Jacob Barber, Alisson Bray, Lindsey Cooper, Justin Dixon, Caleb Fleming, Courtney Gammon, John Griffith, Alex Hill, Amber Kirby, Samantha Warfield, and Cody White, Cheerleaders Courtney Brooks and Ryan Ann Cothron, and Football Players Gage Carr, John Christian, Brandon Graves, Jessie Gregory, Chris Gunter, Brandon Noles, and Dale Turner. Everyone wishes the members of this year’s graduating class nothing but the best and good luck in whatever they choose to tackle in life.
With a 5-5 record the Tigers enter the postseason as a #8 seed in Quad 2 in the Class 4A bracket. They will travel to face #1 seed and undefeated Loudon on Friday November 7th.
Photos by Julie Collins