By JOSH FRYE
The Bulldogs of J.U. Blacksher suffered their second loss of the season, falling to AHSAA Class 2A Region 1 leader Leroy High by a 27-7 margin last Friday, October 18, in Leroy.
The game marked the thirteenth meeting between the two schools. LHS has defeated the Bulldogs all thirteen times.
JUB quarterback K.D. Rabb completed 13 of 15 pass attempts for 102 yards and a touchdown. Rabb, who threw one interception, also ran 13 times for 33 yards.
The Bears made quick work of JUB, scoring on a 4-yard run to take the lead within the first seven minutes of the game. LHS struck again with 3:37 left in the first, going nine plays for a score on a 12-yard run.
Each score was followed by a successful PAT kick, and the Bears had a 14-0 lead.
JUB suffered through a scoreless first quarter, and a series of Blacksher fumbles and bad snaps led Leroy to another scoring drive and an 11-yard TD strike.
JUB’s JaDaniel Nettles blocked away the Bears extra point kick and, LHS held a 20-0 lead.
With Nettles creating positive energy through the blocked field goal, Rabb and Company continued to drive downfield in attempts to create some points before the half. The attempt paid off with just over one-minute left to play in the first half, when Rabb connected on a 14-yard scoring strike to Tucker Spence. Dawson knocked in the extra point, but the Bulldogs trailed 20-7 at the half.
Penalties and bad snaps continued to be the developing story for the Bulldogs offense and defense during the start of the third and fourth quarters.
JUB tallied seven penalties and lost a fumble during the two quarters.
With 7:13 left to play in the game, the Bears sealed the scoring door with a 37-yard rush into the endzone. The PAT kick represented the final margin of victory.
“We had a pretty bad start,” JUB head coach Wes Sims said. “After the first we settled down a bit and played a little better. Fumbles, bad snaps and penalties took a lot of the game out of us.”
Nettles lead the Bulldogs defense with eight tackles. He also gained 49 offensive yards on 11 carries.
Tucker Spence chipped in four tackles and a sack to help lead the defensive effort, while J.T. Tucker pulled in seven passes for 41 yards.
With the victory, LHS continued an undefeated streak against the Bulldogs and improved to 7-0 overall, 6-0 in region play.
JUB moves into the third-place position within AHSAA Class 2A, Region 1 and will host seventh ranked, R.C. Hatch (1-5) this Friday, October 25, for the last regular season game, which is also homecoming and senior night.
“We will need to eliminate self-inflicted wounds,” Sims said. “We need to try to draw away penalties and just become better overall before the playoffs.”
Blacksher first game against R.C. Hatch was last season on October 26. The Bulldogs defeated the Bobcats 52-26.