E.A. Sports Today

Oxford roars back

Yellow Jackets recover from first deficit of season to dump Charles Henderson, set up showdown with Pinson Valley

J.B. Carlisle (33) scored Oxford’s first two touchdowns. Quarterback Trey Higgins (cover) accounted for four in the middle two quarters. (Photos by B.J. Franklin)

By Brant Locklier
For East Alabama Sports Today
OXFORD – The 5A Charles Henderson Trojans stunned sixth-ranked 6A Oxford early with a touchdown thanks to a fumbled punt. It was the first score allowed by the Yellow Jackets in the first quarter this season and the first time they had been behind all year.
If coach Keith Etheredge wanted to see what his team was made of, this was truly the opportunity.

The Jackets responded to their first real adversity of the season to take a 49-14 victory that set up next week’s game at two-time defending state champion Pinson Valley for the region lead.
“We came out of the gate slow, but I was proud of the way our kids fought back,” Etheredge said.
Charles Henderson (1-2) got on the board first after recovering a botched Oxford punt and it only took four plays before tailback Jonathon Carter scored from a yard out.

Oxford (4-0) roared back on its next two possessions to pull ahead 14-7. J.B. Carlisle scored both touchdowns.
Back came the Trojans, however, as they put together a long scoring drive to tie the game on a 10-yard run by Carter.
Oxford was held on a fourth down try late in the half and the Trojans took possession. Instead of running out the clock, they threw three incomplete passes and gave the Jackets the ball back with just over one minute left in the half.
Trey Higgins raced 36 yards and the Jackets called time. The next play Higgins found Rock Taylor in the end zone from 17 yards out and Oxford took a 21-14 lead to the half.
“That was a huge score for us at the end of the half,” Etheredge said. “It was big as it gave us the lead.”
Each time Charles Henderson scored, Oxford answered right back, much to the delight of the 1989 state championship team that was having its 30th reunion at Lamar Field. 

Oxford made some adjustments at halftime and the quarterback draw by Higgins was one of them. Higgins scored on runs of 15 and 60 yards and added another 15-yard run before throwing a 12-yard touchdown pass to Zay Britt to open a 28-point lead.
Higgins ended up with 157 yards on 10 carries. Carlisle had 101 yards on 17 carries.

“We had to get the ball moving downhill a little more in the second half and it worked out well for us,” Etheredge said.
The defense, meanwhile, was all over Trojans quarterback Yahoshua Jones, batting down passes and picking off two in the second half. Octavious Adair and Antwon Fegans had the picks as Jones missed on 12 straight passes.

“Defensively, we were taking too many chances and had to play a little more under control,” said Etheredge.
His defense only allowed 13 yards rushing in the game on 17 carries. In the second half the defensive line batted down three passes and the secondary had five interceptions slip out of their hands.

Jabree Ford (20) knocks down another pass as Oxford’s defense frustrated Charles Henderson quarterback Yahoshua Jones throughout the second half. (Photo by B.J. Franklin)

Oxford 49, Charles Henderson 14

CH (14)Oxf (49)
12First downs19
194Passing yds119
4-40Penalty yds12-92

Charles Henderson  7          7          0         0          –          14
Oxford                         14       7          21       7          –          49
Scoring Plays
CH – Jonathan Carter 1 run (Hayden Bush kick), 9:46 1Q
O – JB Carlisle 8 run (Andrew Warhurst Kick), 7:33 1Q
O – JB Carlisle 6 run (Andrew Warhurst kick), 3:07 1Q
CH – Jonathan Carter 10 run (Hayden Bush kick), 8:31 2Q
O – Rock Taylor 17 pass from Trey Higgins (Andrew Warhurst kick), 0:05 2Q
O – Trey Higgins 15 run (Andrew Warhurst kick), 10:02 3Q
O – Trey Higgins 60 run (Andrew Warhurst kick), 6:07 3Q
O – Zay Britt 12 pass from Trey Higgins (Andrew Warhurst kick), 1:30 3Q
O – Antwon Fegans 25 run (Andrew Warhurst kick), 10:55 4Q

Tavares Elston (25) and the Oxford defense fight to keep Charles Henderson’s Jonathon Carter out of the end zone. (Photo by B.J. Franklin)

To see more photos from the game click this link: www.bjfranklin.smugmug.com

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