Warriors battle past officials, adversity to 24-21 victory over Volunteers

by dentonramsey

Warriors battle past officials, adversity to 24-21 victory over Volunteers

 

By Denton Ramsey / Sports Editor

 

Once again, the South Grand Prairie Warriors battled past bad calls and no calls to a 24-21 victory against the Arlington Bowie Volunteers on Friday, Nov. 17 at Mansfield ISD Stadium.

With the victory, the Warriors advance to face Colleyville Heritage on Friday, Nov. 24 at 7 p.m. at Texas Stadium.

“I can’t say enough about Bowie and the Volunteers and how their kids played,” Warriors head coach David Fisher said. “But I think it even says more about our kids and how they fought back, showed great character and made sure we found a way to win.”

The Warriors took a 7-0 lead in the first quarter after scoring on their second possession of the game when Julian Shankle scampered 36 yards and into the end zone.

Midway through the second quarter, SGP sophomore Thomas Ferguson picked up his first interception of the night to give the Warriors possession at their own 7-yard line.

However, after draining most of the clock and working their way downfield to the SGP 38-yard line, the Warriors were forced to punt on a three-and-out.

Solid D gave SGP another chance to increase their lead when the Warriors regained possession at their own 42-yard line with 1:01 remaining in the second quarter.

And on the very first play of the ensuing drive, the Warriors’ Shankle picked up 51 yards on a draw up the left sideline as he tip-toed out of bounds at the Arlington Bowie 7-yard line.

On first-and-goal with the time ticking away, the Warriors made the most of the good field position as Denzel Dewberry tucked the pigskin and ran into the end zone on a quarterback keeper – knocking over the orange goal marker on his way to daylight.

With 0:27 remaining in the first half, the Warriors pushed their lead to 14-0 after Carson Wiggs’ PAT sailed successfully through the uprights.

But the second half proved to be a different story, as the Volunteers came out hot and scored on their opening drive.

With 10:15 left in the third quarter, Bowie’s Jeremy Davis scored on a 25-yard touchdown run to narrow the Warriors lead at 14-7.

And after forcing the Warriors to punt on their ensuing drive, the Volunteers took over at their own 10-yard line before going on a 12-play, 90-yard drive to tie the game at 14-14.

With 3:31 remaining in the third quarter, Bowie dead-locked the game on a 30-yard touchdown pass on fourth-and-13.

The Warriors looked like they would jump back on top as SGP put together a great drive closing out the third quarter.

But with 1:15 remaining in the third, the Warriors had a bad bounce – or bad luck – as the Volunteers came up with the pigskin on a tipped interception at the Bowie 17-yard line.

With Rakin Rigsby sprinting up the middle of the field on second-and-nine, Dewberry spiraled a beautiful pass to his teammate.

But as the ball hit Rigsby’s hands, it took an odd bounce – backwards and into the watchful eyes and hands of a Volunteers defender.

However, the Warriors were able to stop the Bowie momentum and regain possession at their own 42-yard line to begin the fourth and final quarter.

And four plays later, the Warriors were chasing daylight on a 26-yard Shankle rushing touchdown as SGP took a 21-14 lead with 10:14 left in the game.

But the Volunteers were not ready for the game to end.

Bowie managed to drive 84 yards and to the house in less than five minutes, once again tying the affair at 21-21.

With 4:47 remaining in the fourth, the Volunteers capped off a 13-play drive with an option handoff 25-yard passing touchdown on third-and-13.

And shortly thereafter, the Warriors senior leader and QB – Dewberry – proved to be a playmaker.

On the third play of the Warriors ensuing drive, Dewberry began running toward the right sideline when he decided to pitch the pigskin to Shankle – right as Dewberry was taking a big hit from a Volunteers defender.

But Dewberry tossed the ball before his knee hit the ground, and Shankle rushed up the right sideline before being pushed out of bounds at the Bowie 9-yard line.

Bowie called a timeout with 2:35 remaining in the fourth quarter with the Warriors sitting on third-and-goal from the Volunteers 12-yard line.

And an option-pass from Trae Johnson to Dewberry almost proved to be a disaster as the pigskin was nearly picked off in the end zone.

However, the ball fell harmlessly out of play to setup a 29-yard field goal attempt for the highly-reliable Wiggs.

And Wiggs, once again, showed that he had the leg to handle the pressure come clutch time – successfully nailing the 29-yarder as the pigskin sailed beautifully through the uprights to give SGP a 24-21 lead with 2:34 remaining in the game.

After Wiggs’ kickoff sailed out of bounds on the Volunteers ensuing drive, Bowie took over at their own 30-yard line with a little over two minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.

The Volunteers then pushed their way down the field – all the way to the Warriors 33-yard line – to setup second-and-one with 1:36 showing on the scoreboard.

However, an errant pass due to solid defense led to Ferguson’s second interception of the night on the Volunteers next play.

And with 1:30 remaining in the game, Ferguson picked off the Bowie pass at the SGP 17-yard line to the shouts and cheers from the Warriors sideline and stands.

With the sophomore’s second pick of the night, the Warriors were able to drain the final seconds off the game clock and hold on for a 24-21 round one victory.

“It’s tough to win seven in a row in 5A Texas football, and we just did it,” Fisher said. “But we need to win about five more.”

 

Sports Editor Denton Ramsey can be reached via e-mail at denton.ramsey@gmail.com

 

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