Chambers Academy picked up maybe their biggest win of the year on Friday night defeating region foe Crenshaw Christian on the road 14-7.
Crenshaw was the only remaining undefeated Region 2 team before Friday nights loss, and Chambers’ win secured them a spot in the AISA Class 1A playoffs.
The Rebels were clearly the better team throughout the night, but it took a late score and a defensive stand to ensure the win.
“This was a huge win for our kids,” CA coach Jason Allen said. “I thought we really stepped up and took the game at the end, which is what I have been waiting to see. This could be a turning point for our guys.”
It didn’t take long for the Rebels to assert their physicality in the game. They scored on their first possession when Corey Richardson ran into the endzone from five yards out. The drive was highlighted by a 61-yard run by Malik Lyons. CA missed their two-point conversion attempt, which almost proved detrimental in the end, but their 6-0 lead with 10:23 to play in the first set the tone for the night.
The rest of the first half, the defenses took control, and neither team made much happen offensively.
It wasn’t until early in the second half that Crenshaw got on the board, and they did so thanks to a CA turnover. Penalties pinned CA deep in their own territory on their first possession of the third quarter, and then a fumble gave the Cougars new life at the Rebels’ 15 yard line. They would punch it in the endzone from one yard out with 9:44 to play and took a 7-6 lead after the extra point.
The score seemed to take some life out of the CA defense, as Crenshaw began to move the ball more. They were helped by another CA fumble as well.
Midway through the fourth quarter, the Cougars were driving for another score when CA finally regained their swagger. Crenshaw drove all the way to the Rebels’ 15 yard line, but were stopped on fourth down to give the Rebels the ball back.
From there the CA offense took over. They drove 85 yards in five plays, highlighted by a 35-yard touchdown run by quarterback Tae Henry. Richardson ran in the two-point conversion and with 1:53 left to play, the Rebels were back on top 14-7.
There was still some drama left as Crenshaw made one last charge. It didn’t look good for the Rebels as the Cougars made it all the way to the CA eight yard line as time wound down. But Landon Harmon intercepted a Cougar pass in the endzone to preserve the Rebel victory.
Chambers improved to 3-4 overall on the season and are now 2-2 in Region 2 play. They will close out the region schedule this week when they host South Montgomery County Academy (0-7; 0-3) here in LaFayette. A win would likely give the Rebels the Region 2 number three seed for the playoffs, but other region games could have an effect on seeding. Regardless, the Rebels are now in the playoffs and appear to be playing their best ball of the season.
It couldn’t come at a better time.
Chambers and SMCA will kick off at 7 pm CST at Torbert Field in LaFayette.
*For full story see this week’s print edition of The Sun.