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Brentwood back on winning track

Austin Wells is pumped up as he comes to the sidelines during Brentwood's 35-31 win over Hendersonville.  Wells carried the ball 15 times for 108 yards and a touchdown and returned a kick-off 95-yards for a score in the victory. Photo by Derby Jones

Aaron Maher looks for a target as he rolls out in Brentwood's game against Hendersonville.  Maher hit 65% of his passes in the 35-31 win, gaining 174 yards and scoring twice through the air. Photo by Derby Jones
Under heavy pressure, Brentwood senior quarterback Aaron Maher reverses field looking for extra yardage. Brentwood beat Hendersonville 35-31 in a thriller. Photo by Derby Jones
Sometimes life is really good.  Just ask Aaron Maher.  The Brentwood senior quarterback not threw for a pair of touchdowns in Friday night's 35-31 victory over Hendersonville, the first of the season for the Bruins, but he was also named Homecoming King. Photo by Derby Jones
Brentwood coach Mike Woodward shares a quick smile with quarterback Aaron Maher after a touchdown.  Woodward's plan and Maher's execution led the Bruins to their first win of the year Friday night, a 35-31 victory over previously unbeaten Hendersonville. Photo by Derby Jones
Two late turnovers by Hendersonville proved to be the break Brentwood had needed Friday night, as the Bruins picked their first win of the season, 35-31 on homecoming.

On a night when he was named as the Homecoming King, Bruins quarterback Aaron Maher threw for two touchdowns and helped lead an offense that had been searching for something after an 0-3 start to the year.

“We were all excited before the game, because Coach Woodward told us that you never forget your senior homecoming,” Maher said. “So you either make good memories or bad memories.”

“We put ourselves in this 0-3 hole,” Woodward said. “but it was great tonight to go toe to toe with (Hendersonville), answer each one of their shots and find a way at the end to make a play,”

Austin Wells scored two touchdowns for Brentwood (1-3), one rushing and one on a 95-yard kickoff return in the first quarter, following a field goal of 37 yards by Commando kicker Bryce Deguira to give his team an early 3-0 lead.

After that first exchange, it was evident both teams would need to execute on all cylinders to keep pace with each other. The lead would change hands five times, with Hendersonville leading by as many as 10.

Some of the things that had not been there in the first three games for the Bruins were finally showing up, Woodward said, it was just a matter of executing and being opportunistic on defense. Hendersonville put the ball on the turf 3 times, and Brentwood recovered every time. The Bruins used those Commando mistakes as inspiration, and Brentwood turned one of them directly into the winning points on a Maher-to-Caleb Tyler 17-yard TD pass.
“In the first three games, every team has put the ball on the ground, and we hadn’t recovered one at all,” Maher said.

After trailing 24-14 late in the second quarter, the Bruins gained some momentum going into the locker room when Maher hit Andy Schumpert for 44 yards and a touchdown, but it was Schumpert’s concentration that was most impressive.

Schumpert went up between two defenders to catch the ball, then maintained his balance to walk into the end zone and cut the Commando lead to 24-21.

Both teams traded punts before a Hendersonville punt was shanked off the side of DeGuira’s foot, putting the Bruins in business at the Commando 30. They scored in six plays, with Hunter Anderson doing the honors from a yard out.

A second DeGuira field goal gave Hendersonville a brief 31-28 lead, but two fumbles by Commando backs put the Bruins in business and the Maher-to-Tyler connection was made.

Hendersonville turned it over two plays later, and the Bruins were able to run out the clock.

The Bruins must now turn their attention to the rest of the schedule, when they start the bulk of their district slate next week when Dickson County (0-4, 0-1) comes to town.

Homecoming brings not only a football game but also parade floats.  Brentwood took the advice of his float and, after a slugfest that saw the lead change ten times, the Bruins K.O.'d Hendersonville 31-35. Photo by Derby Jones


Posted on: 9/14/2013


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