Late heroics deny BGA chance to advance
By Joe Williams, Sports Editor
BGA quarterback Cole Grosvenor (13) has good protection as he unleashes one of his 25-passes against DCA last night. The Wildcats fell 27-20 despite Grosvenor's 151 passing yards. Photo by Becky Williams
BGA senior Carter Parkey shares a moment with his father as he realizes his high school football career has ended. Parker, a Mr. Football finalist, played nearly every down in BGA's season ending 27-20 loss to DCA.
Donelson Christian drove 75-yards in the final three minutes, capping the 11-play drive with a one-yard dive with 17 seconds remaining to beat Battle Ground Academy 27-20 last night, ending the season for Franklin’s oldest high school.
“Take nothing away from them,” said BGA coach Roc Batten, “they are a good football team. But we just kept shooting ourselves in the foot. With four turnovers, it’s hard to come back.”
BGA seemed to control the early part of the game, leading 13-6 midway through the second quarter on Zack Hardiman’s 4-yard touchdown run and a pair of field goals from Jarrett Bristol. But after forcing a thre-and-out, BGA fumbled on the second play of the ensuing series, leading to a second DCA touchdown.
Trying to generate momentum heading into the half, BGA turned a 23-yard reception into a turnover, fumbling at the DCA 32 to effectively end the half with the score tied.
DCA ground out their first possession of the second half, moving from their own 25 to the BGA eight. Facing fourth and one at the eight, DCA quarterback Will Reddick tried to sneak up the middle but was blasted by Mr. Football Division I-A Lineman finalist Carter Parkey, turning the ball over on downs and shifting momentum back to BGA.
BGA promptly fumbled on the next play and DCA struck like lightning, scoring on a nine-yard run eleven-seconds later to take a 20-13 lead.
“We got some momentum with the stop and felt like we could get something going. Then we gave it right back.
“That hurt us. Really hurt us.”
BGA got even with five minutes left on a magnificent 23-yard twisting, spinning, field reversing, tackle breaking run by Ronal Cleveland. Cleveland started right, got bottled up, and turned left, breaking tackles and picking up blockers before reversing again before rolling in to the right side of the end zone.
DCA, though, had found a crack in the BGA defense and exploited it on the final drive.
Cleveland led BGA on the ground, tallying 61 yards on 7 carries. Cole Grosvenor had 151 yards in the air, hitting 10-of-23 with a pair of interceptions. Marcus Cawthorne caught four of the ten, racking up 81 yards.
With the loss, BGA finishes 7-4 on the season one that began at 12:01 a.m. on a muggy August morning. The “Midnight Madness” start to preseason was the idea of Batten’s five seniors.
“I am so proud of the senior leadership on this team. The entire team just kept fighting to the last minute. Football is a tough, physical game that teaches you a lot about life. These guys teach me as a coach.
“I love all these guys; we’re a family. It’s the BGA way.”
Asked about the foundation built this year with a young team, Batten was quick to share his priorities.
“We’ll think about next year soon. Right now, all I’m thinking about are those five seniors in the locker room.”
Posted on: 11/15/2013