Briarwood extends shutout streak with 29-0 win over Wenonah

Published 12:07 am Saturday, September 22, 2018

By ERIC STARLING | For the Reporter

NORTH SHELBY – After starting 3-0 on the road for the 2018 season, the Briarwood Lions came home looking to extend that streak to four with a game against the Wenonah Dragons on Friday, Sept. 21.

The night started off a little slow moving for the offense, but the defense put on another show getting their second straight shutout as the Lions beat the Dragons from Wenonah 29-0.

Through four games, the Lions have now given up just a combined 12 points, six to Chelsea and six to Pleasant Grove, and has posted two consecutive shutouts for an average of three points per game given up.

Both offenses struggled on their first possession not able to move the ball.

“Both teams were fresh to start the night, and we both have strong defenses,” stated Briarwood head coach Fred Yancey. “We just had to keep pressing forward until we could wear them down.”

As the quarter was running down, Lions quarterback Jonah Carroll ran the ball in from 26 yards out for what looked to be the first score of the game. A holding penalty brought the ball back and the drive stalled. Noah Nall was called upon to kick the 44-yard field goal. The kick bounced off the cross bar and over for the three points.

Briarwood had great field position most of the evening. They started their next drive at the Wenonah 30-yard line, but again could not get into the end zone once they entered the red zone. Nall hit the 25-yard field goal with 8:08 left in the second quarter to put the Lions up 6-0.

The quick strike play seemed to be where the Lions found there best success the rest of the evening.  Starting at the Dragons 35-yard line, Carroll connected with J.R. Tran-Reno for the quick score. The 35-yard score down the sideline was the longest play from scrimmage in the first half for either side. Nall’s extra point gave the Lions a 13-0 lead at the half.

Penalties and the Lions defense kept the Dragons buried deep in their own end of the field, and again the Lions benefited with a short field on their second possession of the second half.

Carroll made quick work of it again connecting with Peter McKenna for a 28-yard touchdown strike on first down. Another Nall extra point and the Lions were up 20-0.

Special teams pinned the Dragons back at the 5-yard line to start their next series and eventually the Wenonah offense was penalized for intentional grounding in the end zone giving the Lions two points on the safety.

The Lions next drive was their longest and last scoring drive of the evening.  On second and eleven, Carroll again found a streaking Tran-Reno across the middle and he scampered 56 yards for the score. Nall’s final extra point gave the Lions the 29-0 win.

Carroll ended the game with three touchdown passes and a shade more than 150 yards, while Tran-Reno had right at 100 yards receiving.

Seeing Carroll step into that role and be successful only makes this team more dangerous moving forward.

Briarwood will now travel to Hartselle for a non-region game against 4-0 Hartselle on Friday, Sept. 28, in a game against a 6A opponent that is also playing solid defense.