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Tigers Maul Cougars In Region Tilt

Posted on Tuesday, October 3, 2023 at 4:15 pm

 

SHANE SHOEMAKER – Sports Writer

The night began with the celebration of senior night that involved football players, cheerleaders, and band members. By the end of the night, the Whitwell Tigers were celebrating even more.

The Tigers went 3-0 in region play, and even better, kept their undefeated streak of 6-0 alive after beating the Copper Basin Cougars, 54-18, last Friday night.

For as good as the running attack has been for the Tigers this season, they decided to add to their passing game on this night.

The Tigers completed 10 of their 13 passing attempts (76.9 percent) for 234 yards to complement their usual 19 rushes for 187 yards (9.84 per carry).

The Tigers onslaught started early in the first quarter scoring first, when Wyatt Davis ran the ball 11-yards for a score.

Davis would be one of nine Tigers’ runners of the night. However, the junior was the only one to score twice, and one of three to score. The others being senior Ben Barton and freshman Tregon Kilgore.

The rest of the Tigers’ scoring came off the arm of Bennett McDougal, who was 8-of-11 for 201 yards and four touchdowns against the Cougars.

McDougal connected first with Garrett Miller with 5:40 left to go in the first quarter on a 22-yard pass.

His next came with just 35 seconds left in the half, when he found his brother, sophomore Adam McDougal, on a 18-yard pass to make it 20-0.

“He’s definitely our leader on both sides of the ball,” Head Coach Rocky Stephenson said regarding Bennett McDougal. “He’s a type of guy that the kids rally around and respond to. He’s real football savvy. He’s like having a coach out there. We’re lucky to have him.”

Both teams left the score sheets blank for the third quarter. It’s actually the fourth consecutive game, and fifth overall, where Whitwell hasn’t allowed a single point in the third quarter.

Things picked back up in the fourth with both teams scoring a combined six times.

Copper Basin would begin the half with a 20-yard pass reception to get within two touchdowns of the Tigers after missing a two-point conversion.

On the ensuing kickoff, just 45 seconds later, the Cougars capitalized on a Tigers fumble, making it 20-12 after the extra point was blocked.

Over the next seven-and-half minutes, to put the game away, the Tigers would score three times. Scoring once with a 32-yard pass by McDougal, a completion to Therion Mordecai, and another with a 13-yarder to Ryan Scott.

McDougal finished with a solo sack.

The eighth and final score was a 4-yard touchdown run by Tregon Kilgore.

Friday night was the last time the Tigers will be at home this season. Their next four games are on the road, starting with next week at Bledsoe against the Warriors.

“We have a tough task ahead of us,” Stephenson said. “The boys, they know we’re going to be traveling. We look forward to the challenge. It’s going to be challenging.”

The Tigers still have a good chance of obtaining at least one more home game this season, in playoff play. Winning the region would create a home field advantage, but a potential second-place finish in the region would also garner a home playoff game.