Helena hangs on to beat Chilton County
Published 12:26 am Saturday, September 3, 2016
By ANTHONY RICHARDS / For the Reporter
CLANTON – The Chilton County Tigers lost a close game 23-13 at home against Helena to open region play on Friday night.
“One game is not going to define our season,” said Chilton County head coach Brian Bradford. “We’ve still got a lot of football to go, and haven’t some close to reaching our peak yet.”
Both teams traded turnovers throughout the game as a band of rain moved through the area prior to kickoff and again at the tail end of the second quarter, creating a wet ball at times.
The Tigers trailed by a touchdown after one quarter of play, and by two touchdowns early in the second.
“We just didn’t come out with the fire that we needed to start the game,” said Chilton County senior linebacker Casey Baker. “We’ve just got to keep working hard in practice to find our potential.”
Chilton County’s special teams affected the game with a blocked punt by Gabriel Jackson, who also pounced on it in the endzone for a score to put the Tigers on the scoreboard.
Trailing 17-7 at the half, the Tigers roared out of the gates on its opening drive of the second half that lasted 9:18 and was capped off by a 4-yard touchdown run by Kendall Davis.
“We didn’t get a lot done offensively in the first half,” Bradford said. “We challenged them at halftime, and I was proud of them for answering.”
The Tigers cut the deficit to one possession, 17-13, but would quickly lose the momentum built up after Helena returned a 38-yard fumble recovery for a touchdown.
Chilton County’s offense continued to struggle maintaining a rhythm and the Tigers were unable to bounce back.
“Our guys fought until the very end,” Bradford said. “We just made some mental mistakes by turning the ball over and giving up some big plays on defense. That was the difference in the game.”