In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Auburn Week 7 Review For one half, it appeared last Saturday (Oct. 13) as if Auburn was going to win in Baton Rouge for the first time since 1999. The Tigers led LSU 20-0 and looked dominant in all three phases of the game. But that lead slowly but surely slipped
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Etowah, Hokes Bluff ranked in latest ASWA football poll

Released October 18 Class 7A Rank Record Points 1. Central-Phenix City 7-0 340 2. Hoover 6-1 276 3. Thompson 7-0 246 4. Hewitt-Trussville 7-0 210 5. McGill-Toolen 7-0 186 6. Auburn 6-1 149 7. Fairhope 6-1 122 8. Mountain Brook 5-2 81 9. Bob Jones 5-3 39 10. Sparkman 5-2 29 Others receiving votes: Spain
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Jacksonville State sets OVC record in win over EKU

Photo: Jacksonville State quarterback Bryant Horn (left) hands off to Roc Thomas during the Gamecocks’ 41-25 win over Eastern Kentucky last Saturday (Oct. 14) at JSU. (Mike Goodson/Messenger) By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Jacksonville State jumped to a quick 14-0 lead against Eastern Kentucky last Saturday (Oct. 14) and never looked back on the way to
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Southside stays in playoff picture with win over Brewer

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent The Southside Panthers kept their playoff hopes alive with a 20-6 victory over the Brewer Patriots in a Class 6A, Region 7 matchup on Friday (Oct. 13) at Barney Hood Stadium. Southside (2-5, 1-3) set the tone early defensively by forcing three consecutive three-and-outs on Brewer’s first three possessions. The Panther
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Second-half turnovers doom Gadsden City in region loss to Bob Jones

Photo: Gadsden City High’s Ahmad Bell (left) and JaBraun McNeil (21) attempt to tackle Bob Jones’ Dylan Ray during the Titans’ 34-3 loss last Friday (Oct. 13) at GCHS. (Chris McCarthy/Messenger) By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Gadsden City High’s opportunity to secure a home playoff game was literally picked apart by Bob Jones last Friday (Oct. 13)
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Eagles rush past Ashville, 47-14

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Darrian Meads exploded for 224 yards on 21 carries and scored three touchdowns as the Hokes Bluff Eagles built a 33-0 halftime lead on the way to a 47-14 Class 4A, Region 6 victory over Ashville last Friday (Oct. 13). Quarterback Landon Johnson added 92 yards on seven carries while finding
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Etowah shuts out Boaz, wins sixth straight

Photo: Etowah High’s Emaje Graves sacks Boaz quarterback Easton Hardin during the Blue Devils’ 41-0 victory last Friday in Boaz. (Courtesy of Sand Mountain Reporter) By Ricky Smith/For Sand Mountain Reporter Boaz suffered the same fate against Class 5A, No. 7 Etowah last Friday (Oct. 13) that other Region 5 teams have during this football
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DAR snaps Sardis winning streak

By Shannon J. Allen/Sand Mountain Reporter DAR stunned Class 4A, Region 7 leader Sardis on Friday (Oct. 13), upsetting the Lions 31-21 to spoil their 2017 homecoming game in Sardis City. Will Bailey, Nathan Nelson and Brayden Lewis powered the Patriots, who entered the contest without a region victory. DAR improved to 4-3 and 1-3.
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Falkville downs West End, 48-14

By Taylor Beck/Sand Mountain Reporter Any shot that that West End had of making the postseason ended last Friday (Oct. 13) after the Patriots suffered a 48-14 loss to Class 2A, Region 7 rival Falkville in Walnut Grove. The Patriots fall to 2-5, 1-4 on the season, while Falkville improved to 4-3, 3-1. The Blue
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Hornets sting Gaston, 47-12

By Gary Gaddis/For Fort Payne Times-Journal The Ider Hornets are one step closer to the playoffs after a 47-12 victory over visiting Gaston last Friday (Oct. 13). The Hornets increased their record to 4-3 overall and 3-2 in Class 2A, Region 6 with the victory. The Hornets control their own destiny en route to the
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Westbrook shuts out Asbury for fourth straight win

Westbrook Christian won its fourth game in a row with a 38-0 shutout over Class 2A, Region Asbury last Friday (Oct. 13) in the Warriors’ homecoming. Jackson Cox threw three touchdown passes, two to Alex Burnett and another to Court Coley. Cox was a prefect 4-for-4 in passing for 133 yards. Burnett had two catches
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Coosa Christian, Glencoe come up short

Coosa Christian fell to Cedar Bluff, 50-18, in a Class 1A, Region 6 game last Friday (Oct. 13) in Gadsden. Coosa quarterback Caiden Lipscomb three touchdowns passes – one to Evan Delp for 24 yards, one to Ashton Clemmons for 10 yards and one to Karter Roberts for 40 yards. Lipscomb completed 16 of 37
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Alabama Week 6 Review After winning its first two SEC games by a combined score of 125-3, Alabama had its closest game of the season in a 27-19 win over Texas A&M. The game was never really in doubt, but the Crimson Tide let the Aggies hang around for longer than
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Area teams ranked in latest ASWA football poll

Released October 11 Class 7A Rank Record Points 1. Central-Phenix City 6-0 317 2. Hoover 5-1 259 3. Thompson 6-0 223 4. Hewitt-Trussville 6-0 204 5. McGill-Toolen 6-0 172 6. Auburn 5-1 134 7. Fairhope 5-1 115 8. Spain Park 4-2 71 9. Mountain Brook 4-2 52 10. Sparkman 5-1 19 Others receiving votes: Davidson
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Bulldogs end skid with thumping of Asbury

Photo: Gaston High’s Bubba Satterfield (right) and D.J. Easley celebrate Satterfield’s touchdown during the Bulldogs’ 47-0 win over Asbury on Oct. 6. (Gary Wells) By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent The Asbury Rams of Albertville traveled to nearby Etowah County last Friday (Oct. 6) to play a Class 2A, Region 6 “home” game against Gaston. Both teams
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Titans shut out Buckhorn for third region win

Courtesy of al.com Ryan Sparks threw three touchdown passes as Gadsden City rolled to a 41-0 Class 7A, Region 4 win over host Buckhorn last Friday (Oct. 6) in New Market. The Titans (3-4, 3-1) held Buckhorn to just 146 yards of offense. The Bucks (2-4, 0-4) only crossed midfield once. Gadsden City led 31-0
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Garden springs past Conquerors

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent The Coosa Christian Conquerors fell to the Spring Garden Panthers, 42-8, in a Class 1A, Region 6 contest on Friday (Oct. 6) in Gadsden. The Panthers (5-1, 4-0) set the tone early on as they marched down the field for a 10-play, 58-yard scoring drive to start the game. Running back
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Lions keep rolling with fourth straight win

By Taylor Beck/Sand Mountain Reporter Sardis earned its fourth consecutive win last Friday (Oct. 6) in Huntsville. The Lions improved to 4-2 overall and 3-0 in Class 4A, Region 7 with a 43-14 victory over Westminster Christian. Sardis led the Wildcats 43-0 through the third quarter behind the efforts of a stingy Lion defense and
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Warriors rally past Collinsville in region tilt

By Kelsey Daenen/Fort Payne Times-Journal The Collinsville Panthers took a 33-10 loss to the visiting Westbrook Christian Warriors last Friday in Class 2A, Region 6 action. The first quarter was even play with both teams making mistakes, including multiple fumbles. Collinsville’s Kaleb Jones scored on a 1-yard touchdown run in the first five minutes of
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Hokes Bluff, Etowah notch region wins

Ninth-ranked Hokes Bluff (5-1, 3-1) held off Oneonta, 27-21, to win its fourth straight game last Friday (Oct. 6). The Eagle defense made a late goal line stand to secure the Class 4A, Region 5 victory. For Hokes Bluff (5-1, 3-1) quarterback Landon Johnson was 6-of-13 in passing for 158 yards and touchdown passes for
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Stancil scores four TDs in West End win

Courtesy of Sand Mountain Reporter West End improved to 2-4 on the season and 1-3 in Class 2A, Region 7 play last Friday (Oct. 6) with a 35-7 win over Cold Springs in Bremen. The Patriots held a 7-0 lead at the end of the first quarter on Payne Stancil’s 18-yard touchdown run. Marcus Strickland
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Yellow Jackets, Panthers come up short

Glencoe fell to Pleasant Valley, 37-0, in Class 3A, Region 5 action last Friday (Oct. 6) in Jacksonville. For the Yellow Jackets (2-4, 0-3), Cade Alred rushed 17 times for 57 yards. He and Noah Huff each had two catches. Tyler Palomares had 10 tackles, followed by Bradley Scott and Nathan Kuykendall with seven each
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Alabama Week 5 Review Alabama continued its do-minance with a 66-3 rout of Ole Miss last Saturday, and it was clear from the start that the Rebels weren’t going to threaten the Crimson Tide like they had the past few seasons. UA gained over 600 yards on offense, while the defense
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Etowah, Hokes Bluff ranked in latest ASWA football poll

Released October 4 Class 7A Rank Record Points 1. Central-Phenix City 5-0 319 2. Hoover 4-1 257 3. Thompson 5-0 223 4. Hewitt-Trussville 5-0 195 5. McGill-Toolen 5-0 173 6. Auburn 5-1 139 7. Fairhope 4-1 112 8. Spain Park 3-2 62 9. Mountain Brook 3-2 51 10. Bob Jones 4-2 20 Others receiving votes:
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Lady Panthers sweep up at county volleyball tournament

Photo: the Southside High volleyball team displays its first-place trophy after defeating Glencoe in the championship match of the Etowah County Schools Tournament last Saturday (Sept. 23) at Hokes Bluff. Front row, from left: Marissa Hendon, Alexis Thompson, Makayla Moore, Lauren Hunt. Back row, from left: Carsyn Millhoff, Hailey Hendon, Macie Williams, Harley Simmons, Maggie
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Meads leads Hokes Bluff past Glencoe, 41-21

Photo: Hokes Bluff’s Braydon Hill (10) gains yardage after a catch during the Eagles’ 41-21 victory over Glencoe last Friday (Sept. 29) at Glencoe. (Gary Wells) By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Darrian Meads’ No. 6 jersey number was never more appropriate than on Sept. 29 at Glencoe. The Hokes Bluff sophomore running back scored six touchdowns to
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Blue Devils hold off Fort Payne

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent The Etowah High Blue Devils held on for a 27-24 victory over the visiting Fort Payne Wildcats in a non-region game last Friday (Sept. 30) at Jim Glover Field in Attalla. Etowah (5-1) led 27-10 late in the fourth quarter, but the Wildcats scored two touchdowns in 20 seconds to close
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Park Crossing spoils Titans' homecoming

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent No one can accuse Gadsden City of picking an easy opponent for its homecoming game. Last Friday (Sept. 29), the Titans “celebrated” their homecoming with a 65-21 loss to Park Crossing of Montgomery. Despite being flagged for 190 yards in penalties, the Class 6A Thunderbirds outscored the Titans 42-7 in the
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Warriors win second straight

Westbrook Christian improved to 2-3 with a 16-14 victory over White Plains last Friday in Anniston. For the Warriors, Court Coley caught a touchdown pass and ran for another, while Will Dickson kicked a 24-yard field goal. Coley paced the Westbrook ground game with 59 yards on 11 carries, while John Ross Morgan ran 19
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Conquerors come up short against VCA

Coosa Christian lost to Victory Christian Academy, 38-27, last Friday (Sept. 29) in Pell City. For the Conquerors (2-4), Dartavious Britton scored on a 78-yard kickoff return and a 41-yard run. Caiden Lipscomb threw a pair of touchdown passes, one to Ashton Clemmons for six yards and another to Evan Delp for 12 yards. Britton
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Bulldogs fall to Ranburne

Gaston lost to Ranburne, 39-12, last Friday (Sept. 29) at Gaston. For the Bulldogs, Josh Campbell threw a third-quarter touchdown pass to Zach Satterfield. Phillip Simmons and Christopher Tinsley each had an interception. Gaston resumes Class 2A, Region 6 action this week at home against Asbury.
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Alabama Week 4 Review In perhaps the most dominating win of the Nick Saban era, Alabama opened up conference play by embarrassing Vanderbilt, 59-0, on the road last Saturday (Sept. 23). The Crimson Tide outgained the Commodores, 677-78, in total yards and had 38 first downs compared to Vanderbilt’s three. Damien
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Hokes Bluff, Etowah ranked in latest ASWA football poll

Released Sept. 27 Class 7A Rank Record Points 1. Central-Phenix City 4-0 353 2. Hoover 4-1 287 3. Thompson 4-0 248 4. Hewitt-Trussville 4-0 224 5. McGill-Toolen 4-0 188 6. Auburn 4-1 146 7. Fairhope 4-1 126 8. Jeff Davis 4-1 75 9. Spain Park 3-2 40 10. Mountain Brook 3-2 37 Others receiving votes:
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Gamecocks light up Liberty

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Thunder and lightning seem to follow Coach John Grass and his Jacksonville State football team. Last season, the JSU at LSU game in Baton Rouge was delayed for more than an hour because of an electrical storm, and it was déjà-vu all over again last Saturday (Sept. 23) for the Gamecocks’ home
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Westbrook rallies past Section for first win

Photo: Westbrook’s Addison Ponder was a major factor in the Warriors’ 28-21 victory over Section on Sept. 22. By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Trailing Class 2A, Region 6 rival Section by 14 points at halftime last Friday (Sept. 22), Westbrook Christian was in danger of dropping its fourth straight game of the season. The Warriors rose
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Gadsden City shuts out Grissom for second region win

By Adam Crocker/Sports Correspondent Gadsden City High School picked up its second straight Class 7A, Region 4 win last Friday (Sept. 22), blanking Grissom (2-3, 0-3) by a score of 19-0 at Titan Stadium. “It didn’t click early for us, but still had some kids get in there and make some plays when they needed
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Blue Devils blank No. 3 Alexandria

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Etowah High coach Drew Noles knew entering his team’s Class 5A, Region 7 showdown with No. 3 Alexandria last Friday (Sept. 22) that his defense’s performance would decide the outcome. The Blue Devil defense dominated all four quarters of the pivotal region showdown as Etowah (4-1, 3-0) blanked the No. 3
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Sardis holds off North Jackson

Photo: Sardis High’s Josh Scales sacks North Jackson quarterback Tanner Woodall during the Lions’ 19-13 victory over North Jackson last Friday (Sept. 22). (Photo by Huck Treadwell) By Jay Beard/For Sand Mountain Reporter The Sardis defense, along with a ground-and-pound offense, stood tall last Friday (Sept. 22) night as the Lions beat Class 4A, Region
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Miscues doom West End in region loss

Photo: West End High’s Payne Stancil (right) carries the ball as Michael Patton (54) blocks during the Patriots 44-21 victory on Sept. 22 in Walnut Grove. (Photo by Sherry Abercrombie) By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent The Tarrant Wildcats capitalized on seven West End turnovers on the way to a 44-21 Class 2A, Region 7 victory last
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Panthers, Eagles notch big wins

Southside High’s Tyler Abernathy stiff-arms a defender during the Panthers’ 24-6 victory over Fairley of Tennessee last Friday (Sept. 22). (Photo by Gary Wells) Southside gained its first win of the season last Friday (Sept. 22) defeating Fairley of Tennessee, 24-6, in the Panthers’ homecoming. For Southside (1-4, 0-2), Kenneth Bothwell rushed 19 times for
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Yellow Jackets, Conquerors, Bulldogs come up short

Glencoe fell to Randolph County, 40-14, last Friday (Sept. 2) in Class 3A, Region 6 action at GHS. The Yellow Jackets scored on Cade Alred’s 47-yard touchdown run and Jacob Amberson’s 18-yard touchdown pass to Noah Huff. Katie Smith kicked both extra points. Alred finished with 120 yards on 20 carries. Amberson was 7 for
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Auburn Week 3 Review It wasn’t a performance for the ages, but Auburn did enough to defeat FCS-member Mercer, 24-10, last Saturday (Sept. 16). Auburn outgained Mercer 510-246 but the Tigers turned the ball over five times while forcing zero turnovers. It was an ugly performance, and the offensive struggles from
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Hokes Bluff ranked in latest ASWA football poll

Released September 19 Class 7A Rank Record Points 1. Central-Phenix City 3-0 334 2. Hoover 3-1 284 3. Thompson 3-0 243 4. Hewitt-Trussville 3-0 216 5. McGill-Toolen 3-0 176 6. Spain Park 3-1 129 7. Auburn 3-1 127 8. Fairhope 3-1 78 9. Theodore 3-1 39 10. Jeff Davis 3-1 31 Others receiving votes: Oak
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Locals recognized by AHSAA

  A pair of area high school football players were nominated to the Alabama High School Athletic Association’s Prep Spotlight for Week 3 of the 2017 football season. Sardis High’s Logan Gaskin finished with 157 combined yards and accounted for seven touchdowns in the Lions’ 46-27 win over Geraldine. The senior quarterback passed for 78 yards
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Titans notch first win of season in home opener

Photo: Gadsden City’s Ryan Sparks (left) hands off to Jaelyn Fleming during the Titans’ 38-35 victory over James Clemens on Sept. 15. (Gary Wells) By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Gadsden City High School head football coach Bart Sessions was a happy man last Friday (Sept. 15) after his Titans (1-3, 1-1) gave him both his first
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Southside falls to Pell City on late touchdown

Photo: Southside High’s Kenneth Bothwell runs for yardage during the Panthers’ 28-21 loss to Pell City on Sept. 15. (Photo by Gary Wells)   By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor It appeared that Southside High School would send last Friday’s (Sept. 15) game against Pell City into overtime when Kenneth Bothwell’s six-yard touchdown run tied the game
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Blue Devils rally past Guntersville

By Jay Beard/Sand Mountain Reporter Guntersville tried to add another Class 5A, Region 7 region victory to the mix last Friday (Sept. 15), but the Etowah defense was just too much to handle as the Wildcats fell, 26-20, at Chorba-Lee Stadium. Etowah lineman Jessie Altman striped the ball from Guntersville’s Archer Charles midway through the
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Lions pound Geraldine, 46-27

By Taylor Beck/For Sand Mountain Reporter After the Sardis Lions capitalized on three forced turnovers to take a 20-7 first half lead over the Geraldine Bulldogs last Friday (Sept. 15), both offenses exploded in the second half. Sardis senior quarterback Logan Gaskin took his offense down the field and scored on an 11-yard scamper with
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Eagles, Patriots fall in region action

Hokes Bluff suffered its first loss of the season with a 28-27 setback at Jacksonville last Friday in Class 4A, Region 5 action. The No. 6 Eagles (2-1, 1-1) tied the game on Landon Johnson’s 1-yard touchdown run with less than two minutes left in the game, but a two-point conversion pass attempt fell incomplete,
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Conquerors fall to Ragland

Coosa Christian lost to Ragland, 67-26, in high school football last Friday (Sept. 15) in Gadsden. For the Conquerors (2-2, 1-0), Caleb Lipscomb threw touchdown passes of 29, 58, 69 and 30 yards, all to Evan Delp. Lipscomb was 10-for-21 in passing for 238 yards, while Delp had four receptions for 186 yards. Jackson Justus
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No. 1 Fyffe torches Westbrook

By Kelsey Daenen/For Fort Payne Times-Journal The top-ranked Fyffe Red Devils posted a 54-6 win over visiting Westbrook Christian in Class 2A, Region 6 action last Friday (Sept. 15) at Fyffe. Fyffe quarterback Seth Benefield completed a pass to Fyffe’s Brant Rowell for a 72-yard touchdown. The extra point by kicker Brody Dalton was good,
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Collinsville shuts out Bulldogs in region tilt

John Morgan/For Fort Payne Times-Journal Sophomore quarterback Kaleb Jones accounted for five touchdowns and a recovered fumble in Collinsville’s 41-0 victory over Gaston on Friday (Sept. 15) at Collinsville. The Panthers got their first win of the season and improved to 1-2 overall and 1-1 in Region 6 play. Gaston remained winless at 0-4 and
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Hokes Bluff ranked in latest ASWA football poll

Released September 13 Class 7A Rank Record Points 1. Central-Phenix City 3-0 340 2. Hoover 2-1 280 3. Thompson 2-0 226 4. Hewitt-Trussville 2-0 216 5. McGill-Toolen 3-0 183 6. Spain Park 3-0 160 7. Theodore 3-0 81 8. Auburn 2-1 66 9. Oak Mountain 3-0 58 10. Mountain Brook 2-1 28 Others receiving votes:
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Local runners compete at Etowah Trails Invitational 5K

Local runners compete at Etowah Trails Invitational A number of area high school cross country runners competed on the Etowah Trails Invitational 5K last Saturday (Sept. 9) at Noccalula Falls Park. The event was hosted by Gadsden City High School. Several local runners finished in the top 10. In girls event, Meghan McCarthy of Rainbow
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JSU fades in second half against Ramblin’ Wreck

Photo: Jacksonville State’s Darius Jackson (right) covers Georgia Tech’s Nathan Cottrell during the Gamecocks’ 37-10 loss last Saturday (Sept. 9) in Atlanta. By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Jacksonville State made its annual visit into the land of major college football with adverse results once again on Saturday (Sept. 9) in Atlanta. Georgia Tech, one of the
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No. 7 Eagles hold of Cherokee County

Photo: Hokes Bluff’s Levi Taliaferro (19), Dane Driskell (9), Jackson Evans (32), Grant Mason (45) and Ashton Gulledge (2) converge on Cherokee County’s Sidney Perry during the Eagles’ 27-21 win last Friday (Sept. 8) at HBHS. (Photo by Alex Chaney) By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Hokes Bluff jumped to a 21-14 halftime lead and held on for
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Etowah hangs 50 on Douglas on homecoming

Photo: Etowah High’s Evan Jones (right) pulls away from Douglas’ Briley Smith during the Blue Devils’ 50-0 victory last Friday (Sept. 8) in Attalla. By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor It was nolo contendere at James Glover Field last Friday (Sept. 8). In their Class 5A, Region 7 opener against Douglas, the Blue Devils raced out to a
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Titans can’t overcome slow start against Hewitt-Trussville

Photo: Gadsden City’s Jaelyn Fleming drags a pile of Hewitt-Trussville defenders during the Titans’ 38-24 loss last Friday. By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent A sluggish start doomed Gadsden City High in a 38-24 loss to Hewitt-Trussville last Friday (Sept. 8) at Husky Stadium in Trussville. The Huskies (2-0, 1-0) received the ball to start the game
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Sardis upsets No. 8 Madison Academy

By Taylor Beck/For Sand Mountain Reporter Sardis High found itself down 17-0 early in the second half to region foe and No. 8 Madison Academy but the Lions roared back to upset the Mustangs, 18-17, last Friday (Sept.8) in Sardis City. In the past two weeks, Sardis (1-2, 1-0) suffered single-digit losses at the hands
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Coosa Christian conquers Valley Head

By Bradley Roberts/Fort Payne Times-Journal Coosa Christian conquered Valley Head, 25-6, in the first Class 1A, Region 6 matchup of the season for both teams last Friday (Sept. 8) at Valley Head. The Conquerors improved to 2-1 overall and 1-0 in region competition, while Valley Head fell to 0-2 overall and 1-2 in region play.
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Penalties hamper Gaston in region loss to Section

By Adam Crocker/Sports Correspondent Gaston kicked off its Class 2A, Region 6 schedule last Friday (Sep. 8) with a 20-6 loss to Section at Shinbone Ridge. The Lions (3-0, 1-0) regained possession with 8:30 remaining in the first half of play. The ball was being advanced until an interception by Matthew Rich placed the home
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Panthers fall short at Fort Payne

By Cody Dowler/Fort Payne Times-Journal A year ago, it was the Fort Payne Wildcats who didn’t finish strong in a 34-31 loss at Southside. Last Friday (Sept. 8), the Wildcats turned the tables with a 28-14 home win. The Panthers came out on offense with a shifty running game that gave the ‘Cats fits on
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Warriors, Yellow Jackets, Patriots come up short

Photo: West End High’s Levi Armstrong (left) fends off Tanner’s Ben Looney during the Patriots’ 28-10 Class 2A, Region 7 loss last Friday (Sept. 8) in Walnut Grove. (Photo by Sherry Abercrombie) Westbrook Christian fell to Sand Rock, 17-3, in the Warriors’ Class 2A, Region 6 opener last Friday (Sept. 8) in Rainbow City. Westbrook’s lone score
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Alabama Week 1 Review Despite losing much of its front seven to the NFL, No. 1 Alabama’s defense was dominant in the Crimson Tide’s 24-7 victory over No. 3 Florida State in Atlanta last Saturday (Sept. 2). The Alabama offense struggled at times in new offensive coordinator Brian Daboll’s debut, but
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Hokes Bluff ranked in latest ASWA football poll

Released Sept. 6 Class 7A Rank Record Points 1. Central-Phenix City 2-0 280 2. Hoover 1-1 236 3. Thompson 1-0 187 4. Hewitt-Trussville 1-0 178 5. McGill-Toolen 2-0 151 6. James Clemens 1-0 121 7. Spain Park 2-0 111 8. Auburn 2-0 81 9. Mountain Brook 2-0 40 10. Baker 2-0 18 Others receiving votes:
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Locals recognized by AHSAA

Pictured above, Hokes Bluff’s Landon Johnson (Photo by Alex Chaney) Several area high school football players were nominated to the Alabama High School Athletic Association’s Prep Spotlight for Week 2 of the 2017 football season. Glencoe senior quarterback Jacob Amberson completed 12-of-14 passes for 201 yards and two touchdowns in the Yellow Jackets’ 28-17 win
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Yellow Jackets rally past Westbrook, 28-14

Photo: Westbrook Christian’s John Ross Morgan (23) brings down Glencoe’s Easton Foreman during the Yellow Jackets’ 28-17 victory last Friday (Sept. 1) in Rainbow City. (Photo by Gary Wells) By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor When Glencoe High’s first two possessions of the second half last Friday (Sept. 1) resulted in a fumble that led to a Westbrook
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Eagles end skid against Southside

Photo: Hokes Bluff’s Ashton Gulledge (bottom) upends Southside Gavin Griffin  during the Eagles’ 33-16 victory last Friday (Sept. 1) at HBHS. (Photo by Alex Chaney) By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent Entering this season’s opener, Hokes Bluff had suffered six straight losses to the Southside Panthers by an average score of 33-16. But on Friday (Sept. 1),
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Conquerors notch win in home opener

Pictured above, Coosa Christian’s Dartavious Britton By Adam Crocker/Sports Correspondent Coosa Christian (1-1) picked up a 36-13 win over Appalachian in the school’s home opener last Friday (Sep. 1) at Phillip Ellen Field. The visiting Eagles kicked the game off with the ball, but that did not last long. Jasper Hutchens pass was intercepted by
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Bulldogs lose to Pleasant Valley

Photo: Gaston’s Lathon Stewart (7) tries to escape the grasp of Pleasant Valley’s Dalton Page during the Bulldogs’ 37-6 loss last Friday (Sept. 1) at Gaston. (Photo by Mike Goodson) By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent The Pleasant Valley Raiders broke into the win column by dominating the Gaston Bulldogs, 37-6, last Friday (Sept. 1) at Shinbone Ridge.
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Sardis rally falls short against Sylvania

By Taylor Beck/For Sand Mountain Reporter A fourth quarter rally fell short for Sardis against Sylvania last Friday (Sept. 1), sending the Lions to their second straight loss, 27-21. The Rams jumped out to a 20-6 lead after the first half behind a 94-yard punt return for touchdown, followed up with two more rushing touchdowns
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Patriots win; Blue Devils, Titans come up short

Courtesy of al.com West End notched its first win of the season last Friday (Sept. 1) with a 21-19 victory over Susan Moore in Blountsville. Nursing a 14-13 lead at the start of the fourth quarter, the Patriots (1-1) used a 13-yard Jacob Jones to Eli Pearce 13-yard touchdown pass to provide West End some
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent SEC Rankings 1. Alabama 2. Auburn 3. Florida 4. Georgia 5. LSU 6. Mississippi State 7. Tennessee 8. Kentucky 9. Arkansas 10. Texas A&M 11. Missouri 12. South Carolina 13. Ole Miss 14. Vanderbilt Week 1 Previews and Predictions Saturday, Sept. 2 Game of the Week Alabama vs. Florida State (+7.5).
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Hokes Bluff ranked in ASWA high school football poll

Released August 30 Class 7A Rank Record Points 1. Central-Phenix City 1-0 318 2. Hoover 0-1 272 3. Thompson 1-0 237 4. Hewitt-Trussville 0-0 200 5. McGill-Toolen 1-0 155 6. James Clemens 0-0 154 7. Spain Park 1-0 129 8. Auburn 1-0 87 9. Enterprise 1-0 56 10. Bob Jones 0-1 20 Others receiving votes:
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Locals recognized by AHSAA

Pictured above, Glencoe High’s Jacob Amberson Several area high school football players were nominated to the Alabama High School Athletic Association’s Prep Spotlight for the Week of Aug. 25. Making his first start at quarterback, Glencoe senior Jacob Amberson completed 6-of-10 passes for 174 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for 84 yards and two
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Blue Devils take down Southside in season opener

Photo caption: Etowah’s Justin Harris (3) tackles Southside’s Kenneth Bothwell as Jarren Wright (33) closes in during the Blue Devils’ 17-3 victory in high school football last Friday (Aug. 25) in Attalla. (Photo by Gary Wells) By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent The Etowah Blue Devils took advantage of a dominant defensive performance to stifle the Southside
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Titans fall short against Spain Park in Sessions’ debut

By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Photo caption: Gadsden City cornerback Josh Richard (right) covers Spain Park’s Kenyon Hines during the Titans’ 31-19 loss in high school football last Friday (Aug. 25) in Hoover. (Chris McCarthy/Messenger) The Bart Sessions era at Gadsden City High began on a sour note last Friday (Aug. 25) in Hoover. The Class 7A
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Yellow Jackets sting West End, 40-13

By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent Photo caption: West End’s Marcus Strickland (left) attempts to bring down Glencoe’s Jacob Amberson during the Yellow Jackets’ 40-13 victory on high school football last Friday (Aug. 25) in Walnut Grove. (Photo by Mike Goodson) The Glencoe High Yellow Jackets capitalized on five West End turnovers on the way to a 40-13
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Lions lose lead late against Plainview

By Huck Treadwell/For Sand Mountain Reporter Sardis let a 13-point lead evaporate in the waning moments of the fourth quarter against Plainview last Friday (Aug. 25). The Lions gave up a blocked punt and 12-yard touchdown run in a 31-30 road loss at Plainview. Sardis started off with a roar, grinding out a 70-yard drive
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Conquerors, Bulldogs lose in season openers

Coosa Christian fell to Holly Pond, 28-6, in the Conquerors’ opening game of the football season last Friday (Aug. 25) at Holly Pond. Coosa’s lone score came on a 68-yard touchdown pass from Caiden Lipscomb to Evan Delp midway through the second quarter. Lipscomb was 15 for 36 in passing for 208 yards. Sophomore halfback
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Lady Cardinals primed for 2017 volleyball season

Pictured above, Gadsden State head volleyball coach Connie Clark (left) has a word with sophomore outside hitter Morgan Newton (center) and sophomore setter Savannah Beck (right) during a recent practice at Beck Field House. By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor With her first year under her belt as a junior college volleyball head coach, Connie Clark feels she
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent 2017 SEC Predictions SEC West Division 1. Alabama (12-0, 8-0) Losses: none A season ago, Alabama unquestionably was the best team in the SEC, and no other team in the league was particularly close. Nick Saban’s team has won the SEC three straight seasons, and is the favorite to do so
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2017 Football Preview: Gadsden City’s 2017 season now in session

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor First-year coach Bart Sessions has one goal and one goal only for the 2017 Gadsden City High football team – win a state championship. “That’s our only goal. This is Gadsden City, and we don’t coach or play in a game that we think we’re going to lose. I don’t say
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2017 Football Preview: Panthers on the prowl for postseason berth

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Southside High head football coach Ron Daugherty is well aware that his Panthers must make a bigger dent in its Class 6A, Region 7 schedule in order to play in a Week 11 game. “I think that’s a driving force for these seniors,” said Daugherty. “In both of those seasons, we
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2017 Messenger Football Preview: Etowah Blue Devils replenishing stock for 2017

By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Etowah no doubt suffered key losses from graduation, but the 2017 Blue Devils possess a good amount of firepower on both sides of the ball. “In high school ball, you do what have to do to adapt to what your team’s strengths are,” said head coach Drew Noles. “The biggest thing we’ve
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2017 Messenger Football Preview: Eagles aiming to fly high 

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor After winning nine of its last 11 games last season and reaching the state semifinal round for the first time since the 2004 season, head coach Mike Robertson, is confident that his Eagles won’t rest on their laurels. “We just try to prepare our kids each week the best we can,”
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2017 Messenger Football Preview: Loaded Lions ready to roar in region action

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor With a four-year starter at quarterback and the four top receivers back from last season, will Sardis High employ elements of the wide-open Fun n’ Gun offense? “I don’t know about that, but we’re going to try to spread the ball around quite a bit with so much experience at those
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2017 Messenger Football Preview: Seasoned Yellow Jackets ready to make a stir

By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Glencoe played a lot of youngsters last season, and it showed in a 3-7 record. The Yellow Jackets were 3-3 at the halfway point before dropping their last four games. The above greenhorns are now a year older and hopefully wiser, however, and head coach Rusty Davis feels that his veterans have
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2017 Messenger Football Preview: Westbrook looks to improve in 2017 under Mintz

By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Taking over on the fly as a head football coach during the season is no easy task, including one as experienced as Brian Mintz. The 1981 Southside High graduate assumed the head position two games into the 2016 season. “I’ve never done that before,” said Mintz, who was an assistant for Westbrook
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2017 Messenger Football Preview: Bulldogs to rely on trench warfare in 2017

By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Gaston High head coach Swane Morris has a situation on his hands that he can’t recall running into during his previous 17 years as a head coach. Out of every skill position on offense, he has no returning veterans, much less starters. “Some of them got snaps last year, but there’s several
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2017 Messenger Football Preview: Patriots ready to climb the postseason ladder

By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Although the 2017 West End roster may not contain the amount of star power as in the past few years, Kyle Davis believes that his Patriots will provide the communities of Walnut Grove and Altoona with something to cheer for this fall. “I can’t say that this team is as nearly talented
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2017 Messenger Football Preview: Woods back at the helm at Coosa Christian

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Although he temporarily stepped down as Coosa Christian head football coach during the 2016 season, Nevandra Wood liked what we saw from afar when the Conquerors broke an 18-game winless steak and notched their first postseason berth in seven years under interim head coach Chris Sanders. “The season started out rocky,”
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NEO symposium attracts over 100 local coaches

By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Over 120 local coaches and athletic directors attended the 3rd Annual Northeast Orthopedics Coaches Symposium on Aug. 3 at Southside High School. Participants were from area middle and high schools from all sports. “Our biggest goal is general education,” said NEO Certified Athletic Trainer Chris Russell. “Coaches nowadays have so many things
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent West Division Preview Alabama Head coach: Nick Saban, 11th season (114-19 at Alab-ama, 205-61-1 overall) 2016 record: first in West (14-1, 8-0) Key losses: linebacker Reuben Foster, defensive end Jonathan Allen, tight end O.J. Howard Key returning players: defensive back Minkah Fitz-patrick, offensive lineman Jonah Williams, receiver Calvin Ridley 2017 outlook
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent East Division Preview Florida Head coach: Jim McElwain, third season (19-8 at Florida, 41-24 overall) 2016 record: first in East (9-4, 6-2) Key losses: cornerback Teez Tabor, linebacker Jarrad Davis, defensive back Marcus Maye Key returning players: receiver Antonio Callaway, offensive lineman Martez Ivey, defensive end CeCe Jefferson 2017 outlook McElwain
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Longtime local baseball coach takes over at Southside

By Chris McCarthy Publisher/Editor Mike Lamb isn’t ready to step away from the diamond just yet. The former Westbrook Christian and Gaston High head baseball coach recently was named to direct the Southside baseball program. Lamb, who coached the Rainbow Middle School baseball team for the past five years, said it was an easy decision
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Hokes Bluff ranked in ASWA preseason football poll, Gadsden City, Etowah, Westbrook receive votes

First-place votes and 2016 record in parentheses Class 7A 1. Hoover (29) (12-2) 366 2. Central-Phenix City (1) (10-2 261 3. Thompson (5-5) 229 4. Hewitt-Trussville (1) (11-1) 191 5. James Clemens (8-4) 179 6. McGill-Toolen (13-1) 171 7. Spain Park (8-3) 114 8. Bob Jones (7-4) 83 9. Auburn (8-4) 64 10. Enterprise (10-2) 56
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In & around SEC football

By Cole Frederick/Sports Correspondent SEC Coach Rankings, Part II Last week, SEC coaches ranked 8-14 were unveiled. Here’s a quick reminder of who came in where last week: 14, Matt Luke, Ole Miss; 13, Barry Odom, Missouri; 12, Ed Orgeron, LSU; 11, Kirby Smart, Georgia; 10, Butch Jones, Tennessee; 9, Kevin Sumlin, Texas A&M; 8,
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Local cyclist getting better with age

By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Local competitive cyclist Randy Kerr recently received a backhanded compliment. Just after crossing the finish line to win his third straight USA Cycling Mountain Bike National Championships race on July 20 at Snowshoe Mountain Resort in West Virginia, the Gadsden resident was surrounded by three race officials who demanded to inspect his
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Former Panther to coach Sardis baseball

By Chris McCarthy, Publisher/Editor Shannon J. Allen, Sand Mountain Reporter Kevin Vinson has left the Coosa River Valley for Sand Mountain. The 1998 Southside High graduate was recently hired as Sardis head baseball coach. Vinson was an assistant coach last season that saw the Lions win their first area championship since 2010 and gain their first
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