By Pamela Holloway
The LaFayette Bulldogs traveled to Lanett to face their county rival the Lanett Panthers for the rights to be called the Alabama Class 2A Region 5 Champions last Friday night.
This year undefeated Lanett would play the spoiler by knocking off current champs the LaFayette Bulldogs to become the 2017 region champions.
It was a jam packed criwd in Washburn Stadium as the Alabama Class 2A #2 ranked Lanett Panthers and the #3 ranked LaFayette Bulldogs prepared to do battle on the gridiron.
If you recall both teams were in the same position last year, with the difference being LaFayette was undefeated and dominated the Panthers 66-26 and Lanett had one loss.
But this year the undefeated Lanett Panthers were seeking to avenge last year’s blow out and avenge they did. The Panthers improved their record 10-0 of the season with 43-16 victory over the Bulldogs.
The score doesn›t do justice to how close of a game this really was. LaFayette started the game with an onside kick. Lanett recovered the kick and drove the ball down the field for the score.
The game would now become a defensive battle for most of the night.
The Bulldogs defense would come up with a safety after pinning the Panthers back deep in their own territory and the first quarter would end 7-2, Panthers.
The Bulldogs grabbed the lead in the second quarter, after recovering a fumble in the end zone to give the Dogs a 9-7 advantage.Lanett would get another score to regain the lead and go in the half leading the Bulldogs 14-9.
In the third quarter the Bulldogs came out and got on the scoreboard first when quarterback Jaelin McCurdy found freshman receiver Jay Daniel for the touchdown.The Bulldogs we›re now back on top of the Panthers by a score of 16-14.But the Panther would respond with a score of their own to retake the lead 22-16 and never look back.
In the fourth quarter the game was nip and tuck until about seven minutes remained. The Panthers recovered a fumble and intercepted 3 Bulldog passes, with two interceptions going for a pick six.The Lanett Panthers would score 21 unanswered points to close the game and defeat the Dogs 43-16.
The Bulldogs offense was held in check by the Panthers who held the Dogs to just 166 yards of total offense.Running back Robert Houston was held under a hundred yards for the second time this season with only 48 yards on 19 carries.Quarterback Jaelin McCurdy completed 8 of 16 passes for 111 yards, a touchdown, and 3 ints.
Jordan Wallace had his best game receiving with 2 receptions for 54 yards.
Jamarquez Boston-Gaines had 5 receptions for 49 yards, while Jay Daniel had one reception for 8 yards and a touchdown.
On the defensive side of the ball JaQuavion Boston-Gaines registered a monster night with 14 tackles and 4 sacks.Omar Boston also had 14 tackles on the night.Lajareon Bryant had 12 tackles for the Bulldogs and a sack.Keandrae Peterson and Dai›quan Giddens each had a sack.
The Bulldogs are now 7-2 on the season and look to get back to their winning ways as they host the Notasulga Blue Devils Friday night at Bulldog Stadium.
The Bulldogs also will be having Senior night, Friday night.
Game time is 7 p.m. “GO DOGS”