Briarwood wraps up region title with win over Sylacauga

A pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns helped Briarwood Christian School claim the Class 5A, Region 4 crown Friday night with a 24-7 win over region foe Sylacauga.

Briarwood (6-2, 6-0 Class 5A, Region 4) capped off a perfect region record with the win on homecoming night and secured home-field advantage for the first two games in the Class 5A playoffs.

“It feels good to win the region. That was one of our goals at the beginning of the season,” said Briarwood head coach Fred Yancey. “And our region is pretty tough.

“We are going to have to cut down on our penalties, because we committed too many of them tonight,” Yancey added. “But I am very proud of our boys. We beat a very good team tonight.”

The Aggies (6-2, 3-2 Class 5A, Region 4) remained scoreless until the third quarter, but held Briarwood to only 14 points at the half.

The Lions’ first touchdown came late in the first quarter when quarterback Paul Barber kept the ball and powered in from 10 yards out to score. Kicker Wilson Whorton added the point-after-touchdown, giving the Lions a 7-0 lead.

Briarwood scored again late in the second quarter on a wildcat play when running back Cooper Harrington caught a pass from Barber and then launched the ball 41 yards to Connor Hodges for a touchdown. Whorton’s extra point gave Briarwood a 14-0 lead at halftime.

The Aggies answered in the third quarter, when running back Joshua Crowe ran three yards into the end zone to cap off a 94-yard Sylacauga scoring drive on its first possession of the second half. Robert Hamilton added the extra point, bringing the score to 14-7.

But a pair of fourth-quarter Sylacauga fumbles sealed the Briarwood victory. After the Aggies fumbled the ball on their own 25-yard line early in the fourth quarter, the Lions capitalized when Whorton connected on a 20-yard field goal, bringing the score to 17-7.

Sylacauga fumbled again on its next possession, giving the Lions the ball on the Aggies’ 24-yard line. A few plays later, Briarwood’s Matthew Furuto powered ahead 20 yards to score. Whorton scored the final point of the game, connecting with a point-after-touchdown to bring the score to 24-7.

The Lions will finish out their regular season with road games at Florence on Oct. 23, and at Anniston Oct. 30.