By Mark Lastinger
THOMASVILLE — Coach Shane Boggs’ broken heart is swelling with pride today.
Boggs was downcast following Friday night’s painful 33-30 overtime loss to Westwood, but he was pleased with this Brookwood Warriors’ overall performance. He was disappointed in himself, however.
“It’s tough,” Boggs said after his team lost on a fake field goal to end the GISA Region 3-AA opener for both teams. “It’s like I told them. I knew we would come out and fight and compete, and they proved me right.
“Our kids played really, really hard against last year’s state runner-up.”
Brookwood (2-4) appeared to have the game in hand with less than two minutes left in regulation play. Then, on a fourth-and-11 play from the Westwood 26, Boggs called for pass that was intercepted.
Dylon Smith picked off Cale Deese’s offering in the middle of the field before rambling up the left sideline for a 90-yard touchdown. Collier Baggett followed with a PAT that made it 27-27 with 51 seconds left.
“Quite honestly, I feel like I took the game from (my players),” Boggs said. “If I had just run the ball into their little nine-man front right there, that would have made them have to go 80 yards with a minute left. My thinking was that we would make the tackle if it was intercepted.
“I’m going to proceed through the weekend with the mindset that I took the game away from some guys who played really, really hard. I wish I had run the ball there.”
Following the interception, the Warriors took the ensuing kickoff and advanced from their 38 to the Wildcats 25 in just seven plays. From there, John Stauffer tried a 42-yard field that struck the right upright as the fourth period expired.
Stauffer got another shot in overtime, booting a 40-yard field goal to put his team up 30-27.
“We did some great things after my mistake,” said Boggs, who outgained the Wildcats in total yards 413-278. “John made a big-time kick for us.”
Westwood (4-1-1), however, responded by getting a first down before setting up for what appeared to be a tying field goal try by Baggett. The Wildcats faked the kick, however, and Chason Worsham caught an 18-yard pass in the end zone to end the game.
“It was a designed fake all the way,” Westwood head coach Ross Worsham said. “We needed our playmakers to make plays for us, and they did at the end when things didn’t look so good for us. I’m proud they continued to fight.”
Worsham didn’t reserve praise solely for his team.
“Brookwood has a fine team,” he said. “They really played well.”
Deese carried the ball 40 times for 244 yards and two touchdowns. Taylor Patterson added 105 yard rushing yards and two scores on 22 attempts.
Westwood ground out 161 yards, getting 55 and 74, respectively, from Chason Worsham and JT Edore. They each tallied a touchdown.
Wildcats quarterback Ralph Collins passed for 117 yards and three scores. Baggett and Smith had scoring grabs of 38 and 35 yards, respectively.