Most Bulldogs fans knew that going on the road to play Nashville Christian Eagles would be a tough task for a depleted roster.That changes your approach and playing the defending state champions just added to one of the most difficult tasks the Bulldogs would face all year but fight they did before falling 47-6 to a very good Nashville Christian team.
The Bulldogs won the opening toss and elected to receive. With all the rain on Friday including a gulley washer right before kick-off, the Bulldogs plan to use their running game. After misplaying the opening kick-off the Bulldogs started on their own 2 yard line. The Bulldogs tried running plays using Lee Pruitt and Elijah Byfield but had to punt leaving the Eagles with a short field of starting on the Bulldogs 37 yard line.
Nashville Christian All State Quarterback Bryce Pemberton lofted a pass down the field to a wide open Geoarge Walket who carried the ball into the end zone for a touchdown and with the extra point the Eagles led 7-0 running only one play from scrimmage. This play set the tone for the entire first half and the Bulldogs knew now that playing from behind was going to be a hard hill to climb.
With the Eagles defense causing major problems for the Bulldogs another 3 and out resulted in the eagles gaining a start from the 50 yard line and on the very first play Eagles star running back Lelan Wilhoite circled left end and broke 2 tackles and had a clear path to the end zone and a touchdown. The extra point failed but the Eagles led 13-0 with half of the first quarter still left to be played.
The Bulldogs had a nice return on the Eagles kick off as Byfield got to the 26 yard line but once again a wet football resulted in the Bulldogs turning the ball over on the second play from scrimmage and the Eagles Xavier Myers picking off the ball to score to give the Eagles a 20-0 advantage with time enough left on the clock for the Eagles to add 2 more touchdowns and a 34-0 lead after one quarter of play. The Bulldogs were stunned but they kept on playing hard and trailed 44-0 at the break.
The Bulldogs came out the second half and had a great effort as the turnovers were now under control and with Pruitte, Byfield, and Jordan Powell handling most of the load running the ball, and the offensive line play from Billy York along with Justin Bergoff and Dalton Thompson, the Bulldogs played with a lot of fight and came together to play a great second half. The Bulldogs Justin Bergoff scored from 5 yards out with 3 minutes left in the game to put the Bulldogs on the scoreboard.
Here are some bright spots for the Bulldogs in this game. The kick-off return team had a total of 183 yards on 8 returns including a 45 yarder by Elijah Byfield, the play of lineman Bradley was outstanding and that coming from a Freshman, Wesley Bean had a great effort, there were no penalties on the Bulldogs in the game, the Bulldogs just refused to never give up no matter the score and that goes right back to the coaches and every Bulldog played full tilt to the whistle.
The Bulldogs came out of this game with no major injuries reported and that was a major concern for Bulldogs head coach Michael Brown and the entire coaching staff. This Friday the Bulldogs will once again be on the road traveling to Middle Tennessee Christian and another district game. Make your plans to come and support these kids.
Photos by Tina Atkins