Yellow Jackets sting Bulldogs, 34-8

Vincent quarterback Michael Gilham throws a swing pass in the fourth quarter of the Yellow Jackets' 34-8 victory over Montevallo on Nov. 1. (Reporter photo/Graham Carr)

By GRAHAM CARR / Staff Writer

VINCENT – The Vincent Yellow Jackets jumped out to a 26-0 halftime lead and cruised to a 34-8 victory over the visiting Montevallo High School Bulldogs on Nov. 1.

The Yellow Jackets (7-3) bounced back from a 57-33 loss to Woodland High School the previous week.

“I thought our kids stepped up from last week and we found some leaders for us,” Vincent coach Zeb Ellison said.

Unfortunately for the Yellow Jackets, the victory did not come with some bad news as junior running back Ryan Kelow sustained an injury late in the third quarter.  Ellison said Kelow may have a fractured his collarbone and would be out for the rest of the season.  If Kelow indeed did fracture his collarbone, he would be the fifth starting Yellow Jacket to sustain a season-ending injury in 2012.

“It is just part of the game, but it seemed like it has hit us hard this year,” Ellison said.

Kelow was still able to lead the Yellow Jackets with 125 yards rushing and two touchdowns before the injury.  He also forced and recovered a fumble on defense.  Rodney Groce added 95 yards on the ground.

Montevallo coach Andrew Zow said his team started the game flat, a problem they have had throughout the season.

“We have just got to start faster,” Zow said. “They jumped on us and did a great job making plays. We had some untimely plays or mistakes and they capitalized on them.”

The Bulldogs leading rusher was Ronezz Stevens with 47 yards on nine carries.  Ty Evans was 5-for-11 passing for 71 yards and a touchdown with an interception.   The leading receivers for the Bulldogs were Landon Goodwin with 34 yards on three receptions and Daijon Young with 46 yards and a touchdown on one reception.

The Yellow Jackets scored on their opening drive when Kelow ran in a 5-yard touchdown with 8:22 left in the opening quarter.  Delvecchio Johnson hit a wide open Michael Gilham for the two-point conversion.

Kelow set up the Yellow Jackets next score on the defensive side of the ball.  Kelow ripped the ball from Montevallo receiver Landon Goodwin and raced 50-yards before being tackled at the 10-yard line.  Four plays later, he punched in a 2-yard run to his busy night.  The Yellow Jackets two-point conversion was no good.

Vincent senior receiver Anterio Rogers got in on the scoring when he returned a punt 55-yards for a touchdown. The play was set up by Kelow block that took down two Montevallo defenders, allowing Rogers to make the edge.  Vincent was again held on the two-point conversion attempt keeping the score at 20-0.

Vincent added another touchdown when Gilham scored off a quarterback sneak from three yards with 19 seconds left in the half.

After no scoring in the third quarter, Gilham added a 5-yard touchdown run midway through the fourth quarter.  Gilham hit sophomore Quartez Walker for the two-point conversion to stretch the lead to 34-0.

Montevallo got on the board on the next possession when Evans hit Young, who had gotten behind the coverage, for a 46-yard touchdown pass.

The Bulldogs tried the same play on the final play of the game, but the pass was intercepted by Yellow Jacket defender Jace Green.

Montevallo finished the season 2-8, but Zow said he was pleased with how his team improved from the first game to the last.

“Tough season, but I saw growth in spurts,” Zow said. “Record doesn’t show it, but I saw progress. I saw our guys, at certain times, fight and do a great job, but overall, I think we still got a long way to go.”

Vincent will head to Reeltown High School next week in the first round of the Class 2A state playoffs.

“Reeltown is obviously a really good football team,” Ellison said.  “We are going to get our guys up for it and go down there and do everything we can to keep the season going.”