Brookland-Cayce ended its region title drought and ended Gilbert’s bid for a perfect regular season in the process.
The Bearcats returned two interceptions for touchdowns as part of a 21-point second quarter in the 35-18 win over the Indians on Friday to clinch the Region 5-3A title. It’s B-C’s first region title since 2003.
B-C (8-1, 4-0) will end its season next week at Edisto, while Gilbert (9-1, 4-1), which was looking for its first region title in school history, will host a first-round playoff game Nov. 18.
“The biggest thing is everyone doubted us. And I get it, Gilbert had a great team,” B-C coach Rusty Charpia said. “We got a lot of great kids and right now we are riding high. We will celebrate tonight but tomorrow get ready for Edisto.”
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Zion Carroway and Dominick Perry each returned interceptions for touchdowns in the second quarter as Brookland-Cayce took control of the game, 21-0. The Bearcats turned another Gilbert turnover into a touchdown in the third as Reed Charpia scored on a 14-yard run to make it 28-0.
Gilbert got it to 28-12 early in the fourth quarter, but B-C went to its power running game and Rasheed Taylor scored on a 12-yard run with 3 minutes left.
With Brookland-Cayce leading 7-0, the Indians drove inside the B-C territory, but Hartsville transfer Zion Carroway picked off Josh Strickland and returned it 90 yards for a touchdown to make it 14-0.
Brookland-Cayce defense: Bearcats’ three-man front, which includes Coastal Carolina commit Tay Pringle put pressure on Strickland and the secondary picked off three passes. Coming into the game, Strickland had thrown just two interceptions. The defense also held Catriez Cook, the Midlands leading rusher to 100 yards on 31 carries, and had four sacks.
Marquis McCoy: B-C receiver caught a 45-yard TD pass for the game’s first score and also had a big 47-yard run in the first half.
2: Number of region titles for B-C since integration.
1: Number of losses for Gilbert
THEY SAID IT
“Those two pick sixes were result of pressure put on them by defensive line. When you can play a three-man line to pressure quarterback, there is nowhere to throw the ball.” – Charpia
“When I transferred from Hartsville, I told them I was going to earn my way in the Bearcat family and I did that. When I caught the ball and my boys were blocking for me on the left side and I knew it was a touchdown.” – B-C linebacker Zion Carroway
“The second quarter did us in. I’m proud of the way we fought back in the second half. But in that second quarter we had some things happen. We hadn’t done that all year so that cost us. The secret of our success was not turning it over but we did in that second quarter.” – Gilbert coach Chad Leaphart
HOW THEY SCORED
B-C – McCoy 45 pass from Charpia (Edwards kick), 2:33
BC – Carroway 90 interception return (Edwards kick), 10:17
BC – Perry 32 interception return (Edwards kick), 8:50
BC – Charpia 18 run (Edwards kick) 0:18
G – Cook 1 run (kick failed), 11:06
G – Bumgarner 39 pass from Strickland (pass failed), 10:02
BC – Taylor 12 run (Edwards kick), 3:05
G – Thomas 5 pass from Strickland (pass failed), 1:13
Rushing: G: Cook 31-100, Bright 5-39, Strickland 4 (-32), Baston 2-6, McNatt 4-46. B-C: Mays 4 (-1), Charpia 7-50, Taylor 11-86, McCoy 2-62, Brown 1 (-2)
Passing: G: Strickland 16-28-3 128. BC: Charpia 5-8-1 74.
Receiving: G: Bumgarner 6-76, Bright 3-30, Duncan 2-17, Thomas 4-9, Cook 1 (-4). BC: McCoy 2-50, Pradrubsi 1-20, Taylor 1-7, Perry 1 (-3)