E.A. Sports Today

Oxford falls behind early

Vestavia Hills scores twice in the first 30 seconds, Jackets reach red zone twice late in the game, but bids end in turnovers

By East Alabama Sports Today

VESTAVIA HILLS – If the Oxford football team could grow up a little quicker and find a way to settle into the game a little sooner things might be a little different for it right now.

For the second week in a row the Yellow Jackets found themselves behind in the opening seconds of the game.

Last week it was highly ranked Opelika putting it on them early. On Friday, Vestavia Hills scored two touchdowns in the first 30 seconds of the game and then held off the Yellow Jackets twice in the red zone in the fourth quarter to hand their visitors a 17-10 loss.

The 7A Rebels (4-1) scored on their first two plays of the game. Thomas Minor went 75 yards on the first play from scrimmage, then Ford Waters intercepted Brody Syer and returned it 24 yards.

Syer was 16 of 26 passing for 112 yards. Querrion Mason and Jakolby McClendon both had six catches.

Oxford’s only touchdown came from the defense. Desmon Cooley’s fumble return for a touchdown late in the first quarter got the Jackets on the board and Keaton Borelli kicked a 23-yard field goal in the second quarter for all their scoring.

Curry Howard kicked a field goal early in the fourth quarter to give Vestavia Hills a 17-10 lead.

Oxford (2-4) put together potential game-tying drives to the red zone later in the game – one in the closing seconds of the game — but both ended in turnovers.

Last year the Yellow Jackets were finding ways to win games late. This year, with fewer experience players to lean on, their rallies fall just short.

After Vestavia Hills’ big opening play, the Oxford defense held the Rebels to 158 yards of net offense the rest of the game. Kenney Britt had 10 tackles and Cooley had seven.


Oxford 7 3 0 0 — 10
Vestavia Hills 14 0 0 3 — 17

VH – Thomas Minor 75 run (Curry Howard kick), 11:42 1Q
VH – Ford Waters 24 interception return (Howard kick), 11:33 1Q
O – Desmond Cooley 81 fumble return (Keaton Borelli kick), 4:01 1Q
O – Borelli 23 FG, 0:45 2Q
VH – Howard 21 FG, 11:48 4Q

Team stats Oxf VH
First downs 14 9
Rushes-yds 35-113 30-158
C-A-I 16-26-2 5-13-0
Passing yds 112 75
Fumbles-lost 1-1 1-1
Penalties-yds 7-45 6-50

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