Long Cane rolls to league title
Published 12:43 am Saturday, October 26, 2019
By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY
Winning wasn’t enough.
Sure, the Long Cane Middle School Cougars wanted to beat Auburn on Wednesday night to finish an unbeaten season and capture the league championship.
The Cougars, though, came into the game not only intent on winning, but of adding to an impressive streak of shutout victories.
Long Cane came into the game having won five consecutive games by shutout, and it was hoping to continue that streak in the most important game of the season.
The Cougars made it happen.
With a suffocating defense once again leading the way, Long Cane overwhelmed Auburn 32-0 at Callaway Stadium to claim the league title and finish with an 8-0 record.
It was the second consecutive league title for Long Cane.
“Right now we’ve got it going, that every team wants to be the best team,” said Larry Murdock, Long Cane’s first-year head coach. “If you get that fight and that determination, it’s hard to beat it.”
As for this team, Murdock said “I really think it’s them not just wanting be undefeated, but really showing their dominance.”
The Cougars certainly did that.
The defense was suffocating as it has been all season, and the offense did its part as well with some big plays.
Long Cane’s first touchdown was set up by a blocked punt by Charles Davis, with Rico Dunson recovering the ball deep in Auburn territory.
Three plays later, T.J. Mitchell scored on a 4-yard touchdown run, and Mitchell also ran in the two-point attempt to give Long Cane a 7-0 lead.
In the second quarter, it looked the Cougars had scored on a 69-yard touchdown pass from Jeff Davis to Keshun Earl, but the score was disallowed by a penalty.
The Cougars ended up scoring anyway on a Davis 2-yard touchdown run, and Davis completed the two-point pass to Amoni Moody to make it a 16-0 game with 3:52 left in the first half.
On Auburn’s next possession it attempted a fake punt, but Jay Hurston broke up the pass attempt to give the ball back to Long Cane.
With 27 seconds left in the first half, Davis hooked up with Mitchell for a 30-yard touchdown pass, and Mitchell’s two-point conversion run gave Long Cane a 24-0 lead.
In the third quarter, Auburn’s punter mishandled a snap, and the ball rolled loose and was scooped up by Charles Davis, who rumbled 25 yards for the touchdown.
Qua Ramsey had the two-point conversion run to give Long Cane a 32-0 lead, and that’s the way it ended.
Davis is a first-year football player who Murdock said has made a massive impact.
“You have a player who has never played the game before,” Murdock said. “He picked up the sport, and he had a scoop and score the last game (against Gardner Newman), and he had one again. I think it’s amazing, especially considering where he was.”
Murdock added that it’s been satisfying “just seeing how they develop, not only on the field, but off the field.”
In Wednesday’s seventh-grade game, Long Cane won 28-6
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