By Chris McCarthy/Editor
Austin Bush made the most of an unexpected opportunity on Friday (Aug. 28).
Pressed into starting duty at running back midway through the first quarter after senior halfback Taylor Daugherty was sidelined with an injury, the junior scored four touchdowns to lead the host Yellow Jackets (1-0) to a 43-13 victory over Plainview at GHS.
Bush, who also played extensively at defensive back during the game, ended up with 119 yards on 18 carries.
“I couldn’t have done anything without my offensive line,” said Bush. “I give it all to my coaches, too. The first half I was a little winded but the second half I was good.”
Bush’s brother Aaron also had a big game with an interceptions and a blocked punt returned for a touchdown.
“I think both Austin and Aaron had a heck of a ball game,” said Glencoe head coach Lee Ozmint. “Austin is a heck of an athlete and the fastest kid on the team. He played smart and he didn’t fumble, which I liked. He also lost his grandmother last week, so he was playing for something more than a ‘W’ tonight.”
The Bears had five turnovers to Glencoe’s three, but the Yellow Jackets scored 22 points off turnovers while Plainview managed just six.
Although happy with the win, Glencoe head coach Lee Ozmint was less pleased with his team’s ball protection issues.
“We can’t turn the ball over three times and expect to win. But I think we’ll iron those things out. It’s little things that we always try to focus on, which makes a big difference against a good team.”
In his first start, Glencoe senior quarterback Chase Wilson completed 4-of-7 passes for 50 yards while rushing for 82 on seven carries.
Glencoe’s special teams immediately made its presence felt. The visitors were forced to punt on the game opening possession, and the kick deflected off a Bear player. Andrew Lang scooped up the ball at the Plainview 20 and ran it into the end zone. Lang provided the PAT to give the hosts the lead for good.
After a lost fumble and a punt on its first two series, the Glencoe offense cashed in early in the second quarter when Austin Bush scored from 20 yards out for a 13-0 lead.
The Yellow Jackets got the ball back 16 seconds later on Jacob Bradley’s interception. A 19-yard run by Austin Bush and a 25-yard scamper by Wilson helped move the Jackets to the Plainview 6, from where Austin Bush crossed the goal line. Katie Smith knocked through the extra point for a 20-0 advantage with 5:45 remaining before the half.
Glencoe increased its lead to 29 points early in the third quarter. A bad snap on a Plainview punt carried out of the Bear end zone for a safety, then Aaron Bush returned the ensuing kickoff 65 yards for the score.
Trevor Owens recovered a fumble on the following Bear drive, and four plays later Austin Bush scored from four yards away. Lang’s kick made it 36-0 at the 3:47 mark of the third period.
Another bad snap on a Plainview fourth down deep inside their own territory set up the Yellow Jackets at the Bear 10, where Austin Bush took it in for a 43-point lead with 45 seconds left in the quarter.
Ozmint proceeded to sub out his starters, and Plainview took advantage with a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns. Ben Williamson scored on a 2-yard run, then he and Jacob Wooten hooked up on a 22-yard touchdown pass with 5:35 left in the contest.
Glencoe opens Class 3A, Region 6 play next week at Walter Wellborn.
“As long as we have the kids’ attention and they work hard, we’ll be okay,” said Ozmint. “I like the direction of this team. We’re playing well and learning how to how to win. Our kids are teachable and coachable, and we’re on the right track.”