Maplesville 40, Pickens County 12
    AUBURN – Maplesville High School senior running back Terence Dunlap had 38 carries for 180 yards and three touchdowns Thursday afternoon to lead the Red Devils (14-0) to a 40-12 victory over Pickens County in the 2016 AHSAA Super 7 Class 1A state football championship game at Auburn’s Jordan-Hare Stadium.
      The championship was the third in a row for Coach Brent Hubbert’s Chilton County squad and extended Maplesville’s current winning streak to 23 in a row.
     The Class 5A finals got underway at 7 p.m. pitting Beauregard (12-1) and Wenonah (11-2). The Class 4A, 2A and 6A finals close out the 2016 Super 7 Friday. Handley (12-2) and Madison Academy (11-3) meet in 4A finals at 11 a.m. Fyffe (14-0) and Aliceville (13-1) square off in the 2A championship at 3 p.m., and Opelika (13-1) faces Ramsay (12-2) in the Class 6A finals at 7 p.m. All games will be televised lived over the Raycom Media / AHSAA TV Network. Check
www.pathtotheplayoffs.com for channel information.
     Dunlap closed out perhaps the most impressive Super 7 performance in AHSAA history. His effort Thursday earned him Class 1A Championship Game MVP honors for the third straight year – giving him a combined 681 yards rushing and 11 touchdowns on 75 carries in the three state championship games (2014, 2015 and 2016). Maplesville also played for a state championship in 2013 but Dunlap, a freshman at the time, broke his ankle in the playoffs and did not get to play.
   He started the scoring Thursday with a 1-yard run that capped a 56-yard, 12-play drive late in the second quarter to give the Red Devils a 6-0 lead. Kevin Mims scored on a 2-yard run early in the third period and Dunlap added a 5-yard TD run later in the quarter as Maplesville built a 20-0 lead.
    Coach James Thompson’s Tornadoes (11-4) had trouble running the football against the Red Devils’ defense all night. However, the defense and special teams stepped up and closed the gap quickly in a 10-second span later in the third period to cut the lead to 20-12 before the quarter ended.   Demetrius Windham returned a kickoff 84 yards at the 5:14 mark after Dunlap’s second TD. Elliott Windham then intercepted a Maplesville pass on the first play following the Tornadoes kickoff and raced 39 yards untouched for the TD.
    Maplesville scored three touchdowns in the final quarter – an 11-yard run by Nate Watson, a 1-yard run by Dunlap and a 2-yard keeper by quarterback Brent Schoener.
   The Red Devils had the ball 32:46 of the 48 minutes with 249 yards rushing and 95 passing for 344 total yards. They also had 20 first downs to Pickens County’s five. Nate Wilson added 66 yards on 12 carries, and Schoener was 6-of-13 passing for 95 yards. Dunlap had three catches for 51 yards and Wilson had two for 34 yards.
    Defensively, the Red Devils limited Pickens County to zero yards rushing on 22 carries and just 113 passing.  Defensive back Jakavian McKenzie returned an interception 67 yards to set up one TD, and Dunlap had another pick he returned 24 yards.
    Jevonte Eddins led Pickens County with 10 total tackles. Seth Barrentine had six tackles and five assists. Quarterback Zachary Thomas was 6-of-22 passing for 113 yards. Nicorian Robinson caught two passes for 50 yards.
       Dunlap’s 38 carries set a new Super 7 Class 1A record. Windham’s kickoff return was also the longest in Super 7 Class 1A history and was the fifth longest overall for all classes.

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