MONTGOMERY — Defending state champion McGill-Toolen Catholic High School senior quarterback Bubba Thompson and senior receiver Larry Rembert pulled out a 27-23 victory in dramatic fashion over Enterprise in the Class 7A state playoffs last week to grab the AHSAA Prep Spotlight for the second round of the state football playoffs.
Trailing 23-20 with 1:04 remaining, the Yellow Jackets of Coach Caleb Ross were backed up to their own 15-yard line when Rembert, who had two catches for 125 yards, lined up on the right side and streaked downfield. Thompson heaved a strike the receiver hauled in near midfield in stride on the way to a game-winning 85-yard touchdown pass.
The victory extended the AHSAA’s current longest football winning streak to 21 games and advanced the Yellow Jackets (12-0) to the Class 7A state semifinals to face Central-Phenix City (10-1) Friday night. The game will be at Archbishop Lipscomb Athletic Complex in Mobile, home of McGill-Toolen.
Enterprise place-kicker Andrew Osteen put Enterprise (10-2) ahead 23-20 with 2:03 to play with his third field goal of the game to set up the last-ditch heroics of the Jackets’ duo.
Thompson, one of two quarterbacks chosen for the upcoming 30th annual Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game at Cramton Bowl Dec. 10, finished 12-of-19 for 253 yards and two TDs. He also connected with Marlon Williams, also selected for the Alabama-Mississippi Game, for a 6-yard TD earlier in the game.
The McGill-Toolen heroics edged out an outstanding performance by Beauregard running back La’Damian Webb, who rushed for 260 yards and scored six touchdowns (3, 8, 9, 10, 25 and 49 yards) in a 48-20 Class 5A win over Vigor at Prichard Memorial Stadium. The Hornets (10-1) advanced to the quarterfinals to host unbeaten Carroll (12-0) of Ozark this week.
ZION WEBB KEYS 100TH CAREER WIN FOR COACH JAMEY DUBOSE: Zion Webb, a senior quarterback, was 10-of-14 passing for 145 yards and three touchdowns as Central of Phenix City (10-1) beat Auburn 48-9 in the Class 7A state playoffs for Coach Jamey DuBose’s 100th career win. Jaxton Carson added 103 yards rushing and a TD on 10 carries, and Christian Allen caught three passes for 68 yards and two scores. DuBose, who graduated from Opp High School in 1988, has compiled a 100-36 head-coaching record in 11 seasons and at four stops: Susan Moore, Prattville, Florence and Central.
DuBose is 29-7 in his third year at the helm of the Red Devils’ program. The win over Auburn advanced Central to the 7A semifinals for the second year in a row. He was 45-10 at Prattville with Class 6A state championships in 2008 and 2011 and a runner-up finish in 2009. Florence was 16-8 with one trip to the 6A quarterfinals and Susan Moore was 10-11 in two seasons (2002 and 2003) at his first head-coaching stop.
ISAIHA JONES, CEDAR BLUFF: Ran for 295 yards on 31 carries and scored five touchdowns in the Tigers'42-41 overtime loss in the Class 1A playoffs to Decatur Heritage. Teammate Ivory Starr added 100 yards on 30 rush attempts and had a TD.
MARKEVIOUS MATTHEWS, TALLASSEE: The Tigers’ sophomore running back gained 246 yards rushing on 27 carries and scored two touchdowns on runs of 39 and 90 yards in a 42-14 Class 4A win over Saint James.
SPENCER BROWN, MORTIMER JORDAN: The workhorse running back had 35 carries for 236 yards to lead the Blue Devils (10-2) to a 44-30 Class 5A playoff win over Etowah. He scored twice in the fourth quarter.
ROBERT HOUSTON, LAFAYETTE: Rushed for 181 yards and two scores for the Bulldogs (12-0), A 40-34 winner over Sheffield, who travel to unbeaten Fyffe (12-0) Friday for the third round of the 2A playoffs.
GARRETT SANDERS, G.W. LONG: The Rebels running back rushed for 222 yards and three touchdowns on 39 carries and was a perfect 5-for-5 passing for 41 yards with one TD in G.W. Long’s 41-10 Class 2A playoff win over New Brockton. Sanders also had an interception and three tackles on defense, one punt for 47 yards and converted all five point-after kicks he attempted.
C.J. ROBERTS, CARROLL: The Ozark runner picked up 227 yards on 20 carries as the Eagles (12-0) advanced to the third round of the 5A playoffs with a 28-8 win over Calera.
D.K. BILLINGSLEY, SCOTTSBORO: Ran for 204 yards and four touchdowns on 19 carries in a 49-28 Class 5A win over Fairfield. He also threw a 13-yard pass to quarterback Bo Nix.
JORDAN GARRETT, MADISON ACADEMY: Rushed for 196 yards and scored two touchdowns on 29 carries in a 36-0 Class 4A win over Fayette County.
JAELYN FLEMING, GADSDEN CITY: Rushed 22 times for 134 yards and a touchdown and caught four passes for 75 yards and a score in the Titans' 29-28 Class 7A win over previously unbeaten Hewitt-Trussville. Teammate Damon Williams also had 29 carries for 113 yards and caught a game-winning 15-yard touchdown pass with 3:10 remaining for Gadsden City.
GRAYSON WAKEFIELD, DECATUR HERITAGE: Ran for 164 yards on 20 carries and scored four touchdowns in the Eagles’ 42-41 Class 1A playoff overtime win over Cedar Bluff. He also was 11-of-20 passing for 72 yards and another score.
TAYLOR HAYES, PIEDMONT: Rushed for 170 yards and was 9-for-15 passing with two touchdowns in the defending Class 3A state champion Bulldogs' 38-21 victory over Colbert County. The win extended Piedmont’s current winning streak to 20 games. Teammate Lee Stanley added 191 yards rushing and two touchdowns.
DARRIAN MEADS, HOKES BLUFF: Rushed 33 times for 131 yards and a touchdown as the Eagles beat North Jackson 24-14 to secure a quarterfinal berth in the Class 4A playoffs for the first time since 2004. Teammate Landon Johnson completed 8-of-15 passes for 101 yards and two scores.
REED BLANKENSHIP, WEST LIMESTONE: Rushed for 179 yards on 14 carries and caught four passes for 105 yards in the Wildcats’ 39-38 Class 4A loss to Cherokee County. He also had an interception on defense.
KADARIUS TONEY, BLOUNT: Was 16-of-19 passing for 269 yards and four touchdowns in a 27-25 come-from-behind Class 5A playoff win. He connected with LeBarron Jones with 49 seconds remaining for the final score to take the lead for good.
PAXTON MONTGOMERY, AUSTIN: Completed three touchdown passes, two in overtime, as Class 6A Austin (9-3) beat Pinson Valley 44-38 in four overtimes.
TYREN DUPREE, CHEROKEE COUNTY: Completed 6-of-11 pass attempts for 152 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for 180 yards on 24 carries and scored a 10-yard touchdown with 1:51 remaining in the in the Warriors' 39-38 Class 4A victory over West Limestone. Teammate Jacob Graves added 121 yards rushing on 14 carries and scored on a 55-yard run and 30-yard pass reception.
CHADARIUS TOWNSEND, TANNER: Was 7-of-11 passing for 149 yards and three touchdowns, and had 56 yards and another TD on seven rush attempts as the Rattlers posted a 49-14 Class 2A win over Sand Rock.
BANIKO HARLEY, RAMSAY: Completed 11-of-13 passes for 199 yards and three touchdowns as the Rams (10-2) beat Decatur 34-6 in the Class 6A playoffs. He also rushed for a TD.
CHASE LANCASTER, WEST LIMESTONE: Completed 9-of-15 passes for 181 yards and three touchdowns in a 39-38 Class 4A loss to Cherokee County.
CASEY BAYNES, TALLASSEE: The junior quarterback completed 5-of-7 passes for 81 yards and three touchdowns, rushed 24 times for 119 yards and one TD, punted once for 47 yards and had two interceptions on defense in the Tigers’ 42-14 Class 4A win over Saint James.
QUARTEZ HENDERSON, CHEROKEE COUNTY: Caught four passes for 105 yards and two touchdowns and also preserved the Warriors’ 39-38 Class 4A playoff victory over West Limestone by blocking a 22-yard field goal attempt with seven seconds remaining.
TRIKWEZE BRIDGES, LANETT: The sophomore free safety had three of Lanett’s five interceptions as the Panthers beat West End 53-14.
MARKEL LEWIS, CARROLL: Swiped two interceptions, returning the first one 12 yards for a touchdown early in the second quarter to jump-start the Eagles (12-0) to a 28-8 Class 5A playoff win over Calera. He finished with eight tackles.
TYLER MILLER, SPANISH FORT: Intercepted a Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa pass and returned it for a touchdown, giving the defending 6A champion Toros (10-2) the lead in a 23-13 state playoff win. Hillcrest finished the season 11-1.
MALIK WILSON, ETOWAH: Finished with 16 tackles, two fumble recoveries and an interception in the Blue Devils' 42-30 Class 5A loss to Mortimer Jordan.
JAMAL BEATY, G.W. LONG: Had 10 tackles on defense with a sack and also batted a pass that teammate Carlos Smith intercepted and returned for 22 yards as G.W. Long beat New Brockton 41-10 in the 2A playoffs. He also caught four of G.W. Long’s five completed passes for 37 yards, including a fourth-down pass that resulted in a TD.
WILL SINGLETON, HOOVER: Led a strong defensive effort with a fumble return for a touchdown as the Bucs nipped James Clemens 14-7 to advance to the Class 7A semifinals.
ROBERT COLEMAN, MINOR: Snagged two interceptions in the first half as the Tigers beat Hartselle 48-17 in the 6A playoffs.
ISAIAH DONALDSON, NEW BROCKTON: Accounted for 19 tackles, blocked a punt and a point after attempt and also recovered a fumble in the Gamecocks’ 41-10 Class 2A loss to unbeaten G.W. Long. Teammate Clay Kelley was credited with 14 tackles.
LABRYAN RAY, JAMES CLEMENS: Recorded nine solo tackles, two assists, five tackles for a loss and two quarterback hurries in a 14-7 Class 7A loss at Hoover.
MARCUS JONES, ENTERPRISE: Returned a punt 68 yards for a touchdown in the Wildcats’ 27-23 loss to top-ranked McGill-Toolen in the 7A playoffs. It was his third punt return for a TD on the season and his second in as many weeks.
JADARIUS REDWINE, WENONAH: Ran 80 yards on a fake punt for a touchdown and also caught a TD pass as the Dragons posted a 42-14 Class 5A playoff win over Brooks.