Thompson picks off Oak Mountain with dominant shut out
Published 10:13 pm Thursday, October 6, 2022
By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Managing Editor
ALABASTER – Three first-quarter interceptions were all Thompson needed to create separation early against Oak Mountain on Thursday night, Oct. 6 en route to a dominant 51-0 win on senior night in front of the home crowd.
In a region battle, the Warriors jumped out to a 20-0 lead with two pick sixes in the first five minutes accounting for two of the scores in that span.
Seth Hampton intercepted a pass on Oak Mountain’s first drive of the game and returned it for a quick 7-0 lead 50 seconds into the game.
Shortly after, the Warriors got a three-and-out and scored three plays later following a 27-yard reception from AJ Green, a 43-yard reception from Korbyn Williams and a 1-yard touchdown run from Green.
Up 14-0 already, Thompson added another pick six 49 seconds later from Peyton Lewis to extend the lead to 20-0 with 7:03 remaining in the opening quarter.
“They play good every week,” head coach Mark Freeman said of his team’s defense after the game. “We were going to come out tonight no matter what and try to get a jump start for down the road on what we need to do. We didn’t get the ball a lot, but the defense did a great job in giving us that jump start.”
Those two interceptions were just two of three in the opening quarter for the Warriors, as they jumped out to a 34-0 lead through the first 12 minutes of the game.
Thompson was able to tack on its fourth score of the game in the opening quarter as well when Michael Dujon carried the ball in from 10 yards out to make it 27-0.
Then, on the ensuing Oak Mountain drive, Jasiah Ward added the third pick of the quarter to set the Warriors up in good field position.
Shortly after, Green punched in his second score of the night from 5 yards out to make it 34-0 with 1:49 left in the opening quarter.
Following the 34 first-quarter points, the second quarter was much more quiet, but John McGuire made it 37-0 at the half thanks to a 42-yard field goal late in the second quarter.
It was more of the same in the same the rest of the way as the Warriors added a third pick six, this time from Anquon Fegans, while they went on to finish the game with five total interceptions after Zamiere Wirt added one more late.
Fegans’ pick six made it 44-0 with 7:07 left in the third quarter, while Thompson closed out the scoring with 1:46 left in the quarter when eighth grader Trent Seaborn threw a dime to Angel Jones to make it 51-0.
“This season has been a battle, and we knew it was going to be a battle when we scheduled the games that we did,” Freeman said following the win. “To get a night that we can have everybody on our team get to play. We needed a night where we could all get in the game and reflect on what football is. We have worked hard up to this point and they deserved it.”
Freeman said getting to see the young players get on the field and the all of the seniors on senior night was the highlight of the night.
“Tonight, we came out, defense got some turnovers, the game got out of whack early. At that point, we were able to play a lot of kids who deserve to be on the field,” he said. “It was a blessing to see our young kids get out there. They play football because they love it, so to see those young guys get on the field and then after to have so much joy, it’s worth every minute of it.”
Zach Sims and Seaborn both had success in limited action at quarterback for the Warriors. Sims finished 3-3 for 85 yards, while Seaborn totaled 60 yards on 5-8 passing with one touchdown.
Dujon and Omari Thomas led the Thompson rushing attack with 54 and 42 yards, respectively, while Williams totaled 43 yards on one reception to lead the receivers. Green finished with 27 receiving yards, 10 rushing yards and two touchdowns in limited action.
Defensively, 10 players finished with at least two tackles, while Hampton, Ward, Fegans, Wirt and Lewis all had an interception.
Thompson has now won six games in a row since the two losses to the nationally-ranked teams at the beginning of the season. The Warriors are 6-0 in the region and have top-10 battles with Tuscaloosa County and rival Hoover separating them from a region championship.
“The message remains the same,” Freeman said of the final two games. “We have to really focus on us, not who we’re playing. It’s been hard up until now. We played the two teams from out of state, we played Clay and everybody is telling them about all of these games, so I feel like Monday, we started thinking about us again. We did some things early tonight that gives us a lot to build on.”