The Tattnall County Battle Creek Warriors were defeated 28-14 in Baxley on Friday, October 28.
This was a key Region match-up as the Pirates went in the contest unbeaten in Region play and, with a win, would clinch the Region title. The Warrior’s went into the game with a 3-1 Region mark and were playing for home field in the play-offs.
Tattnall County won the toss and deferred to the second half. The Pirates returned Tattnall’s Bonilla’s short kick to their own 40-yard line. A big third down and 16 conversion by a pass kept the Pirates drive alive. Two more big pass plays put the Pirates in business from the Warrior’s two-yard line. Appling would then score on a 2-yard run. The PAT was good and the cannon boomed a 7-0 Pirates lead with 8:23 left in the first quarter.
Jeremiah Mayner made something out of nothing on the ensuring kick return to give the Warrior’s the ball from their own 40-yard line.
On first down, Xavier Friendy rushed for 11-yards to more the chains to mid-field for Tattnall County. But the drive stalled and the Warrior’s punted 3 plays later. #55 MyRhon Addison made a nice punt that was downed at the Pirate’s 2-yard line. But on the next play a Pirate running back found a seam on the right side of the line and out ran the Tattnall defense for a 98-yard touchdown run. The PAT was good and just like that Appling County led 14-0 with 1:21 left in the first quarter. The two teams then traded punts and played the field position game. Then Appling County’s offense went on the move once again. This time however their scoring threat was denied by the Tattnall County defense. A pass attempt by the Pirates endzone was batted up in the air by Jeremiah Mayner and an alert Xavier Friendy snatched the ball out of mid-air and returned it to the Tattnall County 26-yard line with 3:57 to play in the second quarter. That play seemed to ignite the Warrior’s offense.
A few plays later Jeremiah Mayner got the Warrior crowd on it’s feet when he shaked and baked his way down the left sideline for a long run to the Appling County 1-yard line. Mayner would then score on the next play. Bonilla added the PAT and the Warrior’s had cut the Pirate lead to 14-7 with 1:19 to go before the half. The Pirates tried to get more points before half but a field goal attempt sailed wide left of the uprights and the score was 14-7 Appling leading at the half.
Tattnall County had first possession of the ball in the third quarter. The Warriors moved the ball to midfield with a 17-yard pass from Jeremiah Mayner to #33 Andre Anderson. The drive stalled after 3 plays and Tattnall punted again. After the kick Appling County took over their own 10-yard. Once again the Pirates would strike paydirt. This time on a 61-yard touchdown run. The extra point was good and Appling County led 21-7.
On the ensuing kick-off return David Hill gave the Warrior’s a good start from their 33-yard line. Three plays later Jeremiah Mayner went into his bag of tricks as he faked a reverse to Xavier Friendy, that froze the Pirate defense for a brief moment, in the mean while Mayner turned on the jets and streaked past the Pirates for a 64-yard touchdown run. Bonilla again kicked the PAT and the Warriors closed the Pirate’s lead to 21-14 with 2:38 left in the third quarter.
The Warrior defense held on Appling County’s next possession and forced a punt. Tattnall County couldn’t get anything going offensively either and had to punt after 3 plays. But Appling County muffed the punt at Tattnall’s Andre Anderson recovered the loose ball at the Warriors’ 32-yard line with 9:46 to go. Jeremiah Mayner ran the ball twice and picked up a first down. On the Warrior’s next series of downs, Tattnall moved out to mid field and were forced with a 4th and 5 with 6:25 to play.
Jeremiah Mayner was sacked to the backfield and Appling County took over on downs from the Warriors’ 44-yard line. A few plays later the Pirates scored on a 4-yard touchdown run. The PAT was good and the Pirates then led 28-14 with 2:45 to go the game. The Warriors were unable to mount a serious drive as time ran out and Appling County got the win and claimed the Region Title. Appling County is now (7-1) and (5-0) in the Region. Tattnall County currently sets at third in the Region at (5-4) overall and (3-2) in Region 3-AA.
The Warriors will host Pierce County this Friday, November 4th. The winner of this game will claim 2nd place in the Region and will get to host a State play-off game. The loser will have to travel.