Briarwood falls to mighty Patriots

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Coming off an upset victory against Benjamin-Russell last week, the Briarwood Lions had high hopes for their matchup against 5A powerhouse and defending state champion Homewood.

Only minutes into the game, however, the Lions found themselves trying to

stay afloat in the tidal wave that was the Patriots’ offense. Briarwood went down early, trailing 21-0 at halftime; and went on to lose, 35-6, in the Class 5A, Region 3 battle.

&uot;It was really a combination of two things that hurt us,&uot; Briarwood head coach Fred Yancey said. &uot;Homewood’s offense was playing great and we played one of our worst games of the season.&uot;

The Lions could only reach the end zone once, off a 61-yard pass from Briarwood quarterback Barrett Trotter to receiver Nathaniel Carlson coming early in the fourth quarter.

The score did little to faze the robot-like Patriot offense that notched 496 yards of total offense, with 307 of those yards coming in the first half.

&uot;Homewood is a real fine football team,&uot; Yancy said. &uot;They just overpowered us.&uot;

The Patriot’s offense was led by quarterback Austin Hubbard and running back Steve Freeman. Hubbard finished the game completing 17-of-28 passes for 238 yards and 60 yards rushing on nine carries. Freeman notched 146 yards on 22 carries, finding the end zone four times for the Patriots.

Yancey said despite the loss, he thought there were a number of players who performed well for the Lions.

&uot;Andy Davis had a bunch of tackles for us,&uot; Yancey said. &uot;He always plays a great game, but tonight he made a lot of touchdown-saving tackles.&uot;

Davis finished the night with 12 tackles while teammate Jeremy Hall also finished with a dozen stops.

On offense, Trotter played a consistent and controlled game, Yancey said.

&uot;Barrett took care of the ball for us,&uot; he said. &uot;He was consistent and didn’t throw any interceptions.&uot;

Trotter finished the night, completing 13-of-24 passes for 142 yards and one score.

The Lions will wrap up their Region 3 schedule this week as they prepare to host Chilton County. While Briarwood has a reserved spot in the regional playoffs, Yancey said his team will be alert and ready to face Chilton Friday night.

&uot;You always know that you’re going to have to learn to play after losses,&uot; he said. &uot;Next week is definitely a chance for us to get back on the winning trail and have some fun.&uot;

Following the Chilton County game, the Lions will head on the road Oct. 28 for their final regular season matchup against Lee-Huntsville in a non-conference tilt.

Yancey said he hopes his players finish the regular season strong but have some fun at the same time.

&uot;You’ve got to love football whether you win or lose,&uot; he said.

Kickoff for Friday’s game is scheduled for 7 p.m