It was 49-26 when the clock hit zero, but it doesn’t do justice to what this game really was.
#3 Rabun County (3-0) and White County (3-1) squared off in Cleveland in a game where both teams were without a loss.
It appeared to be the same ole song and dance, as the Cats struck first with a Bailey Fisher 2-yard TD run. The Wildcats nickeled and dimed their way down the field on the opening drive, scoring with 7:09 left in the first. The Warriors wasted little time retaliating, as J Ben Haynes found a wide open Ty Ulrich from 30 yards out, tying the game.
Twenty seconds later, Fisher (on the next play from scrimmage) checked down to Austin Jones, who skated the sideline 67 yards to put Rabun back on top. Still in the first, the Warriors again came up big with a huge reception by Cody Versluis, and Kaleb Crane took a direct snap into the end zone to knot the game at 14.
The Wildcats defense and special teams came up big, as Gavyn Jones recovered a fumble when the Warriors were looking to go ahead, and then a White County punt was blocked and recovered inside the 10-yard line, which led to Fisher’s second rushing score with just over five minutes left in the half.
White County marched down the field, as Brett Bardenwerper split the uprights with a 32-yard field goal as time expired, leaving the Warriors within 21-17 (and receiving the second half kickoff). Bardenwerper started the third quarter scoring with a 37-yard field goal to make it a 21-20 ballgame.
Fisher, after a big passing play, again ran one in on his own (his third rushing TD) to push the lead to 28-20. Rabun got the ball back and even got deep into Warrior territory to perhaps put the game out of reach, but penalties led to a missed field goal and a swing of momentum. On 3rd-and-16, Crane gave the Warriors new life, as he ripped off an 84-yard TD. The Warriors went for two, and after a penalty on a pass attempt gave them another try, it was the Rabun defense that stood Crane up at the goal line and kept the 28-26 lead into the fourth.
The Wildcats then caught fire, as Fisher found Cole Keener for a 62-yard TD. Two plays later, Haynes’ throw was picked off by Jones, who took it back for a touchdown. In just moments, the game went from a 2-point deficit to 16 for the Warriors.
Fisher polished off the night with a 5-yard TD pass to Keener, following a huge run by AJ Wheeler to get inside the 10.
The Cats move to 3-0 on the season, while White County (3-1) suffers its first loss.
HIGHLIGHTS COMING SOON