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McKenzie falls to Brantley, 47-7

The McKenzie Tigers’ Cinderella season came to a screeching halt Friday night as they were handed a whopping 47-7 loss at the hands of the Brantley Bulldogs in Bulldog Stadium.

The Bulldogs wasted no time getting points on the board as quarterback Chase Hall ran in the first Brantley TD within the first two minutes of the game. Adam Hill’s PAT was true, and the Bulldogs went up 7-0.

McKenzie’s offense had trouble grounding out any yardage on their first possession, something that would haunt them the entire night.

As they turned the ball back over to Brantley, Teven Daniels bounced out a 35-yard TD run with 5:38 left in the first quarter. Hill missed the PAT, but the Bulldogs led the Tigers 13-0.

McKenzie again gave up possession of the ball after another fourth down, and Brantley quickly turned it into another touchdown.

Devonte Porter ran the ball in on a 35-yard run for the third Bulldog TD of the night. Hill missed the PAT, but the Bulldogs went into the second quarter with a 19-0 lead.

But the Tigers weren’t out of the game just yet. McKenzie recovered a fumble with 10:27 left in the second quarter.

Quarterback Calvin Henderson ran with the ball but fumbled; Emmanuel Johnson recovered the fumble leading to a Tiger third down and setting up McKenzie’s only touchdown of the night.

Henderson threw a complete pass to Cliff Pugh for a first down.

On the ensuing drive, Emmanuel Johnson took the handoff around right end for a gain of six yards.

Johnson then took a direct snap on a fake punt and got the first down on the Brantley 42 yard line – this led to McKenzie’s TD as Calvin Henderson ran the ball in for the score.

The PAT was good, and with 7:42 left in the second quarter, the Tigers were on the scoreboard trailing 19-7.

McKenzie’s defense began to come alive as they held the Bulldogs in check on the next Brantley possession, and soon gained control of the ball again.

But the Tiger offense couldn’t muster enough yardage against a strong Brantley defense, as both teams headed into the half with the Bulldogs leading 19-7.

Brantley’s Devonte Porter scored with 6:42 left in the third quarter, as quarterback Chase Hall ran in the two-point conversion, bringing the lead to 27-7.

But McKenzie didn’t possess the ball for long as Jared Wiley intercepted a Tiger pass, and from there, added another Bulldog TD as Devonte Porter ran it in on a 5-yard scamper.

Hill’s kick was good, and with 4:03 left in the third quarter, Brantley led 34-7.

McKenzie again gained possession of the ball, but couldn’t muster any yardage as they headed into the fourth quarter trailing the Bulldogs.

Brantley’s Derek Holley added another TD with 11:07 left in the fourth quarter.

With Hill’s PAT being true, the Bulldogs now held a commanding 41-7 lead.

Brantley wide receiver Cassius Tillis added the final Bulldog score for the night on a beautiful pass from Chase Hall.

Hill missed the PAT, and Brantley walked away with a 47-7 win over the Tigers.

“I didn’t do a good job preparing these guys for this game,” McKenzie head coach Miles Brown said. “I take full responsibility for this loss.”

The Tigers will face another region foe, Kinston, next week at home. Game time is 7 p.m.