The Briarwood Academy Buccaneers continued to be plagued by injuries last Friday in a 30-14 loss at Edmund Burke Academy.
“Edmund Burke, I give them all the credit. They made all the plays when it counted and their quarterback really played well on Friday,” said Bo Fleming, Briarwood Academy head coach. “Bottom line, we just didn’t get it done Friday.”
The game’s outcome created a three-way tie between Briarwood, Edmund Burke Academy and Thomas Jefferson Academy for the region championship. The GISA uses first-half points to determine first place.
Edmund Burke clinched first place, Briarwood took second, and Thomas Jefferson ended in third place.
The EBA Spartans threatened to score early, but Briarwood’s Tucker Lord prevented a touchdown by picking off the pass in the end zone. It was his first of two interceptions in the first half.
Early in the second quarter Briarwood struck quickly with back-to-back big pass plays.
“We hit Tucker Purvis on a slant to get a big gain and then we hit Jacob Petrie on the long one,” said Fleming.
The Branson Beggs to Petrie touchdown pass put the Bucs up 6-0 and Trenton Cotton nailed the extra point kick. The Bucs took a 7-0 lead with 9:01 remaining in the first half.
EBA immediately battled back with an 11-play scoring drive and then opted to go for two, which the Bucs prevented. Going into the half, Briarwood led 7-6.
But before the half, fate dealt Briarwood a twist.
As Dax Reese tried to sweep right and follow the lead blocking of fullback Lucas Freitas, both were injured on the same play.
“When the injury happened to Lucas and Dax got hurt on he same play it changed a lot of our game plan offensively and defensively,” said Fleming.
The coach explained Reese reinjured himself but continued to try to play. Freitas is likely done for the year. Fleming said it appears Freitas has a torn ACL but said that would not be confirmed until an MRI on Tuesday.
“It was a 7-6 game us, and when they went down it just changed the dynamics of both offense and defense,” added Fleming.
The only remaining highlight of the Bucs’ first half was stopping EBA as Lord picked off his second pass of the night.
“Tucker Lord made a lot of good plays at defensive back. He did really well for us Friday,” said Fleming.
As the game progressed into the second half, EBA scored on a 47-yard run then on an 11-yard run. In both cases, the Spartans tried to go for two but the Bucs’ defense held.
The Spartans added another third-quarter touchdown on a 60-yard quarterback keeper and again the Bucs held on the conversion attempt. At the end of the third quarter, Briarwood trailed 24-7.
Late in the third quarter the Bucs put together a successful drive, which ended in the end zone early in the fourth quarter. Cameron Perkins scored from 1 yard out and Cotton kicked the extra point.
EBA scored one more time and the night concluded with a 30-14 win for the Spartans.
Reese led the Bucs in rushing with 54 yards from nine carries. The Bucs only had 60 total rushing yards at EBA.
Briarwood picked up 171 yards passing with Beggs completing 8 of 20 and Reese 2 of 2.
Gage Taylor was the leader in tackles with 12 total, 8 solo. Scott Reynolds ended the night with 9 tackles, 8 solo, and Braxton Blakey had 8 total, 6 solo.
This Friday, Briarwood will travel to Dawson to face 7-3 Terrell Academy.
“We’ve never won in school history at Terrell so we’re going to try to do something we’ve never done,” said Fleming.