Turnovers cost Warriors
Published 11:44 pm Friday, October 2, 2015
By ERIC STARLING / Special to the Reporter
ALABASTER – After a week off to refresh from the first half of the season, Thompson hosted the Rebels of Vestavia. The Warriors started the night with Homecoming celebrations, before taking the field looking for their fourth win of the season. After the final whistle, Thompson found itself on the short end of a 23-13 score.
From a statistical perspective, this game was close, but the Warriors were unable to come out on top. Passing yards, rushing yards and first downs were all in the Warriors favor. The big difference was turnovers. The Warriors turned the ball over seven times on the night versus one lost fumble for the Rebels.
Early on, it appeared both teams were rusty or feeling the effects of the first chilly fall football night. Vestavia took the opening kick and three plays in, they fumbled the ball over to Thompson in their own end of the field.
Thompson’s first possession set the tone for the rest of the night. Two penalties in a row put the Warriors in a first and twenty situation, and then on second down, Walker Lott’s pass was tipped and ultimately intercepted by the Rebels.
Thompson turned the ball over on their first three series of the night with two interceptions and a fumble.
Vestavia capitalized with two field goals and a touchdown, jumping out to a 13-0 lead. They took that score into the locker room at the half.
“No disrespect to the Rebels, but you can’t beat anyone with seven turnovers,” stated head coach Mark Freeman. “It wasn’t just one person, we just weren’t in sync.”
The Warriors received the kickoff in the second half and immediately coughed the ball up on the run back. The Thompson defense kept the Warriors in the game by keeping Vestavia out of the end zone during that possession.
As the fourth quarter started, the Warriors were down by 16, when Lott found Jordan Haywood in the back of the end zone for the 9-yard strike. A failed two-point conversion left the Warriors trailing 16-6.
On a critical fourth and one, the Warrior defense held and Thompson took over at their own 22-yard line. On the very first play, Thompson fumbled the ball and the Rebels scooped it up and ran it in for the score.
Thompson added a late touchdown when Lott and Haywood connected again for a 29-yard touchdown to pull to within ten at 23-13.
The Warriors will look to rebound on the road next week at Hewitt Trussville.