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Bulldogs#039; bark too much for Ariton

Brantley has been known for its offensive play all season.

Last Friday night, the third-ranked Bulldogs (9-0, 7-0) had to rely on their defense as they shutout undefeated Ariton 14-0 and claimed the Class 1A, Region 2 title.

"I really thought our defense stepped it up and played at a different level than we have been playing at," BHS Head Coach David Lowery said. "We were backed up for most of the night, didn't have good field position and our defense was put in a lot of bad positions, but they kept them out of the end zone."

The road win marked the Bulldogs' third consecutive region title.

"We're excited about winning the region and winning a good game," Lowery said. "We've got other goals we're looking forward to and that's one goal on the way."

The Bulldogs scored the first points of the game midway through the fourth quarter when senior receiver Antwuan Foster hauled in junior quarterback Edgar Walker's 42-yard pass. Sophomore running back Jeffrey Daniels bulled his way in from three yards out to give Brantley its second score of the evening.

Lowery believes playing such a tough game before the playoffs will be beneficial to his players. He said the game really tested his players.

"As far as a four quarter game, it was probably our biggest challenge," Lowery said. "We've had some other games that were close for a while, but that was probably our first time that we had to really push in the fourth quarter. I think that is good for us. I think we need that kind of experience going into the playoffs. Fortunately, we got the experience and the win at the same time."

Foster finished the game with five receptions for 85 yards and two interceptions. Walker broke 100 yards passing.

The Bulldogs will host Luverne Thursday night in a cross-county rival for bagging rights.

"No doubt is it going to be a big time game in a big time atmosphere," Lowery said. "It will be a good opportunity for playoff experience because that's the kind of crowds and intensity you're looking forward to in the playoffs. We just expect a good, hard-fought game.

"I don't know if it's the game you want to end with because it will be physical and you run the risk of getting people hurt," Lowery said. "It's going to be a fun game for the crowd and the players, no doubt."

Kickoff is at 7 p.m.