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The Oliver Springs Middle School Bobcats were seeking revenge for a regular season defeat when they traveled to Spring City Thursday for the Clinch Valley Conference AA Championship, but Larry Green’s squad would leave Rhea County disappointed as the Bulldogs claimed their second straight conference title, 30-0.
“I’m proud of our guys,” Bobcat had coach Larry Green said following the game. “We fought through a lot of adversity this year with a lot of injuries. We’ve got a good football team, but we made too many mistakes to beat a good football team tonight.”
The breaks seemed to be breaking in Oliver Springs’ favor in the early going. The Bulldogs tried their version of the “Music City Miracle” on the opening kickoff, but they fumbled the ball away with the Bobcats recovering at the Bulldog 20.
Oliver Springs was unable to pick up a first down, but recovered another fumble on Spring City’s next possession, taking over at the Bulldog 30.
Again, the Bobcats couldn’t take advantage of the good field position and the rest of the night belonged to Spring City.
After taking over on downs, the Bulldogs put together a five-play, 76-yard drive to take an 8-0 lead with 18 seconds left in the first quarter.
Spring City made it 14-0 on their next possession as they drove 74 yards in six plays, scoring with 3:22 left in the half.
Disaster struck the Bobcats on the ensuing kickoff. They fumbled the ball away then Spring City scored four plays later on a one-yard run to take a 22-0 lead with 1:44 left in the first half.
The Bobcats used a 30-yard run from Logan Kelly on the second play of the third period to reach the Spring City 24, but the drive would stall as the Bulldogs took over on downs at the 30.
Two plays later, the Bulldogs used a 34-yard pass to take a 30-0 lead with 4:05 left in the third quarter.
The Bobcats would get two more opportunities to put points on the board, but the Bulldogs defense held as they celebrated their second straight title.
“It was a great year for us,” Green added. “I’m proud of our eighth graders for getting us back to this point. This was our first winning season in three years.”
Oliver Springs ended the evening with 118 yards total offense. All 118 yards came on the ground with Kelly (17-80) and Michael Lowe (3-29) leading the way.
Spring City had 260 yards total offense with 226 yards coming on the ground and 34 through the air.
Oliver Springs ends the season with a 6-3 record.
Oliver Springs Statistics
Rushing- Kelly 17-80, Davis 2-3, Woodward 6-5, Farr 2-3, Lowe 3-29, Team 1-(-2).
Passing- Farr 0-2, Kelly 0-1.