Bainbridge beats Lee County, 60-41, in wild 1-AAAA duel

LEESBURG -- Bainbridge came back with a furious second half and then hung on to beat Lee County, 60-41, in a wild one on Friday night to gain a berth in the Class AAAA state playoffs.

"After everything our kids have been through now we're in the playoffs and we play (Thomas County Central) next week for either third or fourth,'' Bainbridge coach Ed Pilcher said.

Lee County led at halftime, 34-26, but Bainbridge scored in just about every way imaginable to win.

"We didn't play very well in the first half, but we played much better in the second half,'' Pilcher said.

Bainbridge got two TD runs from Damian Bouie, a TD run from Terry Lewis, and QB Quincy Fortson threw for a touchdown and ran for a touchdown, but on a wild night the Bearcats also scored on an interception return from Jamez Harris, a kickoff return from Greg Cooper and Dontavious Balkmon blocked a punt and scored on the return.

Lee County QB Matt Mears completed 28-of-56 passes for 378 yards and four TDs, and also rushed for a touchdown, but -- with Lee County trailing by four points in the fourth quarter -- Mears was knocked out of the game.

"It was a wild one. We were down 19-3 after the first quarter, up 34-26 at halftime, and then got the lead early in fourth," Lee coach Dean Fabrizio said. "One thing about our kids. They are resilient. Bainbridge is a real good team, and we stayed right with them until the end.''

Lee's Josh Cabrera had 140 yards receiving and scored a TD and Brandon Payden and Andrew Stroud also caught TD passes for Lee County (1-5 in Region 1-AAAA and 4-5 overall).