E.A. Sports Today

Cubs win shootout

Alexandria, Cherokee County combine for 114 points, more than 1,000 yards of offense in highest-scoring game Cubs ever played

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

You think Alexandria wanted to make a point after laying an egg last week against Anniston?

If offense was your cup of tea, Lou Scales Stadium was the place to be Friday night. There was plenty of it to go around.

The 10th-ranked Valley Cubs, shut out last week to spoil an undefeated season, enjoyed more than 500 yards of offense and scored their most points in a game in four years in a psyche-cleansing 65-49 win over Cherokee County.

The two playoff-bound teams combined for more than 1,000 yards of total offense; the Cubs had 517 — all rushing. The 114 total points were the most by two teams in an Alexandria game ever and came within one point of the Warriors’ highest-scoring game ever.

They were scoring points like mad. Twice in the first half they swapped touchdowns on five straight possessions. They combined for seven touchdowns and 51 points in the second quarter. They both scored in the first minute of the third quarter.

“It was like Arena Football,” Cubs coach Frank Tucker said.

His two-headed backfield dragon — Keenan Woodruff and Jamal Tucker — combined for 402 yards rushing and seven total touchdowns. Woodruff rushed for 274 yards and three touchdowns; he also scored on a 97-yard kickoff return.

Tucker rushed for 128 yards scored the Cubs’ first three touchdowns — on his first four carries of the game.

“We needed to come out here and show we could put points on the board,” Jamal Tucker said. “There was a bunch of scoring out there. Me and Keenan had a conversation (after the Anniston game) about how we should not have been stopped like that. We’re probably the best running backs around here and we needed to show our fans and community that we can play better.”

Cherokee County quarterback Tyren Dupree was brilliant, especially in the first half. He completed his first seven throws, nine of his first 10 and finished the half 14 for 19 for 194 yards. The only pass he missed in the early run was one Riley Shaw broke up in the end zone.

Dupree wound up completing 20 of 31 for 256 yards. Quartez Henderson caught eight balls for 124 yards and Justin McKnight caught nine for 94. Jacob Graves rushed for 107 yards. Brendan Bray didn’t have many rushing yards, but he ran for three touchdowns. The Warriors (6-4) had 496 yards of offense as a team.

The Valley Cubs (8-1) punted on their opening possession and then scored the next eight times they touched the ball. They erupted for 386 yards and 45 points in the first half.

Tucker scored their first three touchdowns on runs of 55, 32 and 20 yards. Woodruff scored the next three of the half on runs of 21, 62 and 13; he had had 206 yards in the second quarter. Ironically, he was stopped for no gain on his first carry of the night.

“We wanted to bounce back and show them we’ve still got it and we’re not falling apart,” Woodruff said. “It’s very fun playing in a game like this. Any game you can do what you want, but you feel you’ve got it more when you’re making big runs, getting big blocks and constantly pounding it. You’ve got to watch out for the two-headed dragon.”

The Warriors, meanwhile, just couldn’t find the proper defense to slow down the Cubs and saw their six-game winning streak come to an end.

“We had somebody hurt last week and tried to compensate for it and do something we’d never done before,” Warriors coach Tripp Curry said. “We took a safety and did something else with him and we couldn’t get back to a normal defense. We somewhat slowed them down in the second half … but we couldn’t get back in a regular defense.

“We tried something and it didn’t work. … It was a great game to watch, but that’s not really my cup of tea – not both sides of offense.”

Both teams now head into their respective playoffs. The Warriors travel to Deshler, a team they last played in 2010. The Cubs host West Point, a team elevated into the playoffs following an eligibility ruling against J.O. Johnson.

Alexandria 65, Cherokee County 49

Cherokee Co. 7 21 7 14 — 49
Alexandria 15 30 13 7 — 65

A – Jamal Tucker 55 run (Quentin Bowie pass from Luke Tucker), 7:47 1Q
C – Quartez Henderson 19 pass from Tyren Dupree (James Sewell kick), 5:37 1Q
A – J. Tucker 32 run (Trey Primm kick), 3:10 1Q
C – Brendan Bray 1 run (Sewell kick), 11:09 2Q
A – J. Tucker 20 run (Keenan Woodruff run), 10:12 2Q
A – Woodruff 21 run (J. Tucker run), 8:51 2Q
C – Bray 10 run (Sewell kick), 7:43 2Q
A – Woodruff 62 run (Primm kick), 7:19 2Q
C – Dupree 5 run (Sewell kick), 4:12 2Q
A – Woodruff 20 run (Primm kick), 0:26 2Q
C – Jacob Graves 68 run (Sewell kick), 11:16 3Q
A – Woodruff 97 kickoff return (Primm kick), 11:00 3Q
A – Jacob Heathcock 7 run (kick failed), 6:15 3Q
C – Bray 1 run (kick failed), 11:41 4Q
A – Heathcock 1 run (Primm kick), 8:28 4Q
C – Julian Latty 18 pass from Caden Hubbard (Hubbard run), 0:15 4Q

Team stats Cher Alex
First downs 26 20
Rushes-yds 33-219 39-517
C-A-I 22-33-0 0-0-0
Passing yds 277 0
Fumbles-lost 1-1 0-0
Punts-avg 2-14.5 1-34.0
Penalties-yds 11-105 14-150

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