Nov. 18—HARTSELLE — All season the Hartselle Tigers had made a name for themselves by pulling out wins in close games.
Friday night, however, that magic finally ended.
In a rematch from earlier this season, Gadsden City scored with 23 seconds left to defeat Hartselle 22-15 in the second round of the playoffs.
“Our kids have fought all year, and tonight we just came up a little short,” Hartselle head coach Bryan Moore said.
You could almost say it was a miracle that Hartselle was even in the game.
Coming into the contest, the Tigers were already without running back Lincoln Bryant (589 yards rushing, nine total touchdowns), and quarterback Noah Lee was playing through an injury. Two plays into the game it got even worse for Hartselle as star running back Ri Fletcher (1,043 yards rushing, 16 total touchdowns) went out and never came back.
Hartselle’s offense, which came in averaging nearly 230 yards rushing in the last seven games, was relegated to using a third-string running back and it showed, as the Tigers were held to under 20 points for the first time since scoring 17 in the season opener vs. Austin.
“We had no business being in that game,” Moore said. “I don’t usually say that, but we lost so many guys.
“We had some guys really step up, but it’s tough when you don’t have all your weapons,” Moore added.
Hartselle opened the game with a 79-yard, eight-minute drive that ended with a four-yard rushing score from Jayden Morris to give the Tigers a 7-0 lead.
After a missed Hartselle field goal, Gadsden City equalized the game with an 80-yard touchdown.
In a play reminiscent of Auburn running back Michael Dyer’s run in the 2010 championship game, the Titans took the lead at the beginning of the second half 14-7 with a touchdown run that came after the seemingly tackled running back hopped up and ran for the score, never…
Source link : https://sports.yahoo.com/hartselle-falls-final-seconds-gadsden-133300292.html
Author : The Decatur Daily, Ala.
Publish date : 2023-11-18 13:33:00
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