Spring City Middle School wins Ridge to River Classic over Rhea Middle 34-28
October 5, 2017
Evensville, TN — Spring City Middle School won the third annual “Ridge to River” Classic against Rhea Middle School 34-28 in a classic game that was not decided until 3 overtimes were played. Spring City came back from 14-0 to tie the game before regulation and then scored a touchdown after the Bulldog defense shutdown the Eagles attempt to score earlier in the overtime.
Both schools came in with 6-1 records and the game was expected to be a close one but I don’t think anyone thought it would go 3 overtimes.
Rhea Middle received the opening kickoff and things looked good early as Stony Colbaugh ran from the Eagle 25 to the 44 yard line on first play of the game. Colbaugh was coming off a 3 touchdown performance against Ocoee Middle in last weeks game. Gavin Roddy next broke open a 31 yard run down to the 17 yard line of the Bulldogs. Bulldogs defense stiffened and Kenneth Hackler came up with the near interception on 4th down to stop the bleeding and give Spring City the ball at their 12 yard line with 4:46 left in the first quarter.
Jadden Pankey helped get the Bulldogs out of the shadow of the goal line and Austin Brackett picked up the first Bulldog first down of the night. Cook a nice pass completion to Alloway to move the ball to the 42 at the end of the first quarter. Bulldogs quarterback Cade Cook had little trouble corralling the snap and Bulldogs were forced to punt from the 39 yard line.
Stony Colbaugh had the return all the way from the Eagle 35 down to the 17 of Spring City. A face mask penalty moved the ball down to the 9 yard line. Eli Griffin took the snap and sprinted around the left end for touchdown on first play from scrimmage and initial touchdown of the night with 7:09 left in second quarter. Bulldogs stopped the 2 point conversion attempt to keep score at 6-0 Eagles.
Cole Ruehling kicked off and Brackett returned the ball just past mid-field. Bulldogs moved the ball down field before a muffed punt gave the Eagles the ball at their own 38 yard line. Gauge Harrison put the Eagles across midfield with the 14 yard run to Bulldog 48 yard line. Eagles had a possible touchdown just out of the reach of Colbaugh before their 4th down attempt was thwarted by Sir Alloway with nice tackle on Roddy to give the ball to Bulldogs at their own 32 yard line. Time ran out for halftime with Eagles leading 6-0.
Jaden Pankey took opening kickoff of second half from Bulldog 28 t Eagle 44 yard line. Eagles defense stiffened and Bulldogs punted from the Eagle 42 yard line. Colbaugh had nice return from Eagle 32 to the Bulldog 37 yard line, but block in back call brought ball back to the 34 of Rhea Middle. Colbaugh got the Eagles another big gain with run from the Eagle 34 to the 26 yard line of Spring City, a 40 yard run off the double reverse. Colbaugh later got the ball down to 4 yard line to setup first and goal. Quarterback Eli Griffin rolled out to right, took quick downfield and decided to run and the result was Eagle’s second touchdown of the night. Griffin took the two point conversion up middle to add two more points to the Eagle lead which went to 14-0 with 4:05 left in the third quarter.
Spring City took the ensuing kickoff and moved down the field with Pankey moving the ball down to the 30 yard line of Eagles with Drew Fisher’s big block springing Pankey for the 20 yard gain. Alloway then had two good runs for around 20 yards before Pankey had nice 15 yard run down to inside the one yard line. As the third quarter neared end, Pankey had his touchdown run negated by holding penalty.
Spring City scored their first touchdown of the game on a Pankey run over the left side with 7:55 left in 4th quarter. Gavin Roddy make the stop on Paney to stop the two point conversion attempt to keep the score at 14-6.
Austin Brackett kicked off for Bulldogs and Harrison returned ball to 30 yard line. A fumble took the ball back to 16 yard line and later in drive Drew Fisher just missed on coming up with interception on 3rd down play to force the punt. A nice return by Pankey was negated by penalty and Bulldogs took over at their own 41 yard line. Sir Alloway has a nice 20 yard run to get the ball into Eagle territory at the 36 yard line. Eagle’s defense stiffened and they stopped Bulldogs on 4th and 2 try to take over the ball at their own 28 yard line with 3:30 left in regulation and it looked like time might run out on the Bulldog’s hopes.
Bulldogs defense held and forced punt with 2:30 left on the clock and Bulldogs took over at the 42 yard line of Rhea Middle. Pankey gave the Bulldogs first down at the 27 yard line. Brackett and Alloway took the ball down to 11 yard line before Pankey found the 4 yard line before Alloway found the end zone with 1:23 left in the game to pull Bulldogs within 14-12.
Rhea Middle took short kickoff(onside variety) around midfield and drove ball down to around the 30 yard line before a Cade Wicks sack of Eli Griffin at the 45 yard line. Drew Fisher almost came up with interception as buzzer sounded for end of regulation.
Rhea Middle had the ball first in overtime and Gavin Roddy made the crucial 4th down run for the Eagle touchdown. Colbaugh inched across for the conversion to give Rhea Middle 22 points. Sir Alloway took just one run to score for Bulldogs with great offensive line blocking. Jadden Pankey punched across the two point conversion for 24-24 tie.
Sir Alloway had hard run down to two yard line before Austin Brackett trucked across for the touchdown. Stoney Colbaugh streaked through the offensive line of Bulldogs to slow down Alloway before he was gang tackled short of the goal line. Rhea Middle now had opportunity to win if they scored touchdown and two point conversion. Colbaugh needed just two runs to score a touchdown and setup the win opportunity for the Eagles. Sir Alloway accelerated past the Eagle blocker to take down Colbaugh and force a third overtime.
Stoney Colbaugh scored on double reverse for Eagles on their possession but illegal shift brought play back. A 4th down pass fell short and gave Bulldogs a chance to win with a touchdown. Pankey ran hard to get ball down to three yard line with second effort. Sir Alloway cruised into the end zone on the next play for the winning touchdown for the Spring City Bulldogs with Drew Fisher getting key block on the play.
Great win by Spring City, but both teams brought lots of talent and grit to the field. Tough loss, no matter who loses but have to give Spring City credit for coming back from 14-0 deficit. Several players had stellar games. Stoney Colbaugh was tremendous on both sides of the ball. Christian Eldridge and Gavin Roddy were very active defensively for the Eagles. Eli Griffin had two touchdowns on the night.
Sir Alloway and Jadden Pankey teamed together to provide lots of special plays. There are many others who I may have left out. Do remember Caden Wicks and Drew Fisher with some big plays for the Bulldogs on defense though. Rhea County High Coach Pemberton had to be excited to see that there is talent in the pipeline that lead to Rhea County High School.