Helena falls to Benjamin Russell with playoff spot on the line

Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 22, 2022

By CHRIS MEGGINSON | Special to the Reporter

HELENA – Helena’s postseason hopes came to an end Friday with a 47-14 loss at Benjamin Russell to finish 3-3 in Class 6A, Region 3 action. The loss dropped the Huskies into a fourth-place tie with Calera, which holds the tiebreaker following its four-overtime, 52-51 victory on Oct. 14.

Benjamin Russell wrapped up second place in the region with the win. The Wildcats were held to a pair of early field goals by Noah Alsobrook from 39 and 31 yards out to take a 6-0 lead. An interception at the Wildcats’ 44 set up the second scoring drive. Helena looked to answer with one of its own, but missed a 20-yard try late in the first quarter. The Wildcats punched in a 7-yard touchdown run to close the quarter up, 13-0.

A Ty’quan Williams interception set up a 58-yard touchdown pass from Gabriel Benton to Malcolm Simmons with 3:23 left in the second quarter and sent Benjamin Russell into halftime with a 20-0 lead. It was one of three TD receptions for Simmons in the game.

Helena gave up 21-straight points in the second half, including a 42-yard pick six by Corri Milliner. Milliner scored twice in the game and had two interceptions.

Trailing 41-0, the Huskies found the end zone twice in the fourth quarter. Hunter Hale zigged, zagged and raced 62 yards to return a punt for the Huskies’ first score, 41-6, with 11:43 to play in the game. Benjamin Russell answered, but Jordan Washington tacked on a 22-yard rushing touchdown with 24 seconds left.

Malcolm Simmons led Benjamin Russell with three touchdowns.

Helena (6-3) will close its regular season Thursday, Oct. 27 when it hosts Vestavia Hills at 7 p.m. Benjamin Russell (7-2, 4-2) will host Valley to close the regular season.