E.A. Sports Today

Classic in 5A

No. 2 Clay Central falls to No. 1 Jasper when OT 2-point conversion misses the mark

J.D. McNealey runs for Clay Central’s first overtime touchdown against Jasper. (Photos by Jeremy Wortham)

By Jeremy Wortham
For East Alabama Sports Today
LINEVILLE – One play. That’s all it took to separate Class 5A’s top two teams – No. 1 Jasper and No. 2 Central-Clay County – from being winners and losers Friday night.
That one play came in the second overtime in the form of Central-Clay coach Danny Horn going for the two-point conversion that would ultimately fail, leaving the Volunteers short 35-34.
“I thought we had just as good of a chance going for the two as we would kicking the extra point” Horn said. “Our snaps have been kind of off tonight.”
That gutsy play came after Quentin Knight caught a 9-yard pass from Boyd Ogles to match Jasper’s 10-yard TD pass from Parker Sawyer to open the second overtime.
“This is it. This is what we’ve been working for,” Horn told his team during a timeout leading up to the two-point attempt.
It came out of the wishbone formation with the ball in the hands of Knight. The same play Horn and Knight had success with throughout the night for several yards at a time. When that play mattered the most, thought, the Vols were unable to convert. Knight rounded the outside corner and was met by a wall of Vikings defenders to run him out of bounds.
“They did what they had to do; we did what we had to do,” Jasper coach Bryan Moore said. “It’s just a great team win. You don’t get many wins like this.”.
The two teams didn’t waste any time getting on the board early as each took their opening possession and easily marched the ball down the field. Jasper had a 54-yard drive and Central-Clay a 65-yard drive that was a little more electrifying with the first play being a flea flicker that resulted in a 55-yard gain to set up their first score just plays later.
Both defenses quickly settled in as Jasper was forced to punt six times and Central-Clay seven. Points ultimately came at a premium during regulation of the game with some being a little more dramatic than others.
“Some times when you get a little down, you’ve got to play a little harder,” Horn said. “I learned a lot about my players’ character.”
After four unsuccessful drives for the Volunteers, their third quarter drive of 60 yards for their third score was made easier due to 45 yards in penalties by Jasper (illegal head contact, pass interference, roughing the snapper during field goal attempt). The third score gave the Volunteers a 21-14 lead. 
Jasper forced overtime when John Collins scored on a 1-yard run with 5:53 left in the fourth quarter and Preston Reed kicked the extra point.
Jasper 34, Central-Clay 33

Jas (34)Clay (33)
81st Downs12

Jasper              7  7  0  7  7  7 –  34
Clay Central     7  6  8  0  7  6 –  33
Scoring plays
J – John Collins 1 run (Preston Reed kick), 8:13 1Q
CC – Caden McCain pass from Boyd Ogles (Clay Yates kick), 6:33 1Q
CC – 6 run (kick failed), 10:05 2Q
J – Kaden Shelton 28 run (Preston Reed kick), 8:12 2Q
CC – Quentin Knight 1 run (Carter Young pass from Boyd Ogles), 0:29 3Q
J – John Collins 1 run (Preston Reed kick), 5:53 4Q
CC – J.D. McNealey 2 run (Clay Yates kick), OT1
J – Kaden Shelton 7 run (Preston Reed kick), OT1
J – Carson Alvin 10 pass from Parker Sawyer (Preston Reed kick), OT2
CC – Quentin Knight 9 pass from Boyd Ogles (run failed), OT2

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