Blount Press Row

In Full Bloom

Governors deliver senior night shocker to Admirals

William Blount coach David Gregory gets a hug from daughter, Madison, with wife, Ann, at right after the Governors upset Farragut on Friday. Photos by Chris Ritchie

By Brandon O’Neal
Staff Writer
Blount Press Row

Men do cry. A win on senior night can do it to you.

After William Blount defeated Farragut, 25-22, Friday night at Mike White Field, it got emotional.  It was the first time in four years the Governor senior class was able to go out with a win.

Lane Bloom wards off an Admiral tackler Friday.

William Blount coach David Gregory let his team and fans know just how proud he was of all of them. Gathered in a post game circle, there wasn’t a soul who didn’t have a tear their eye.  As Gregory gave his postgame speech, he stumbled over words and choked back some tears of his own.

“I love each and everyone of you,” he said. “Fans, I love you too. Thank you all for hanging in there and being positive with us. You all stuck it out with us through the tough times.”

Looking at the stats, each senior had a great game. Lane Bloom rushed 18 times for 156 yards. Quarterback Tim Green passed for 130 yards on 12-of-16 attempts, with 42 rushing yards on 12 carries. Vinnie Hasenstaub was all over the field on defense, highlighted by making a crucial play to bring up fourth down on Farragut’s last drive.

If you don’t pay attention to kickoffs, you would have missed one of the most important plays of the game. Senior Ryan Hodgson was the last man back on kickoffs and saved what was probably a touchdown.

Vinnie Hasenstaub turns a cold shoulder to an approaching Admiral.

A kicker doesn’t normally have tackling stats, but in this case it proved important. Farragut got the ball at the Governor 44-yard line – instead of a touchdown – where the drive eventually ended on fumble.

The Admirals recovered a Green fumble on the opening drive to give them the ball at the Governor 35-yard line. Five plays later, Farragut was on the board, 7-0, coming from a 26-yard pass from Bryan Phillips to Billy Williams at the 9:46 mark of the first quarter.

William Blount answered. Quickly.

From their own 34, Bloom took the handoff left, turned the corner and said bye to the Admiral defense. Sixty-six yards later, the Governors had answered the Farragut score in 17 seconds.

Later in the first quarter, William Blount put an eight-play, 65-yard drive together, culminating in a 17-yard touchdown pass to Hasenstaub.

After the Governor defense caused the first of two fumbles inside their 10-yard line, William Blount took the ball 92 yards in 11 plays for more. A 35-yard pass to senior Justin Laforty set the Governors up at the 6-yard line. One play later, sophomore Brandon Tipton caught the 6-yard touchdown pass for an 18-7 lead.

Sophomore Brandon Tipton is a Governor to watch in coming years.

Farragut came out rolling in the second half.  From their own 23, the Admirals rushed six times to the Governor 4-yard line. The Governor defense held to turn the ball over on downs.

Farragut’s next drive resulted in a Trace Fuller interception, returned to the Admiral 15-yard line.

Bloom struck again on one play. The Governor back took it right up the gut of the Farragut defense to extend the Governor lead to 25-7 with 5:09 left in the third quarter.

Not to be counted out, Farragut took the ball 80 yards in 7 plays to score on a 19-yard touchdown pass to Jake Bruce to trim the deficit to 25-14.

It took Farragut six plays to go 46 yards, ending it with a 9-yard run from Jackson Fain.  Farragut’s two-point conversion failed, leaving the score 25-20 with 11:02 left to play.

Special teams play resulted in terrible field position for the Governors. Starting at its 1-yard line, William Blount’s only rocky spot came on a bad snap, resulting in a safety with three minutes left.

Senior Justin LaForty makes a big grab for the Governors.

A personal foul on the kickoff back the Admirals up to their 35-yard line. On fourth-and-15, Bloom broke up a pass over the middle to turn the ball over on downs.

Farragut got one more crack at it, but come up short with a second incomplete pass on fourth down.

“It was a perfect way to end it,” Bloom said. “We never stopped and we did a lot of the little things right tonight. It feels great to be able to go out with a win.”

 

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