TRM "B" avenges loss to Neal

Published 3:14 am Wednesday, October 6, 2004

By By BRUCE HIXON Sports Editor
They failed to take advantage of a couple of opportunities. They had two touchdowns called back on penalties.
Yet the T.R. Miller Tigers still had enough big plays left over to notch a 27-12 victory over the W.S. Neal Blue Eagles Monday in a "B" game contest at Brewton Municipal stadium.
The victory improved T.R. Miller's "B" record to 3-1 and avenged a 12-7 loss to the Blue Eagles back on September 13. W.S. Neal fell to 1-1 at that level.
T.R. Miller got a 52-yard touchdown pass from Baxley Raines to Brice Martin on its first offensive possesison of the game and never trailed.
After Reo Kirkland's point after attempt stretched the lead to 7-0, it was the defensive side that produced T.R. Miller's next score moments later.
The Blue Eagles fumbled in their backfield and an alert Tanner Shehan picked up the loose ball for T.R. Miller and returned it 35 yards for a touchdown. Kirkland's PAT kick quickly made it 14-0.
T.R. Miller had a chance to break the game wide open in the opening frame when Martin recovered the ensuing kickoff deep in W.S. Neal territory, but that threat ended on downs at the Blue Eagles 25. The Tigers wasted another good scoring chance later in the first half when they lost a fumble at the W.S. Neal 11.
Having dodged a couple of bullets, W.S. Neal's offense inflcted one of its own when it drove 89 yards over 11 plays. Quarterback Marquis Barksdale capped off the long march with a one-yard run up the middle. A missed conversion left T.R. Miller's lead at 14-6.
T.R. Miller closed out the first half on a strong note, as it got a 29-yard touchdown run by Travis Holland in the waning moments. Another Kirkland PAT knocked the lead up to 21-6 headed into halftime.
The Blue Eagles cut into that lead late in the third quarter when they drove half the field (50 yards) and scored on a three-yard touchdown run by Bobby Freeman. A missed two-point conversion pass left T.R. Miller's lead at 21-12.
The Tigers closed out the scoring early in the fourth quarter when Justin Gomez plowed through from two yards out. A missed conversion kept the final margin at 27-12.
"Even though we scored 27 points, it was probably our defense that set the tone for the game with some big plays. Tanner Shehan and Brice Martin had a couple of big fumble recoveries for us. We moved the ball well on offense. Baxley completed some good passes for us and we ran the ball well with Travis and Justin," T.R. Miller coach Jamie Riggs said.
Both T.R. Miller and W.S. Neal will close out the "B" season next Monday with road dates. The Tigers will head to Andalusia, while the Blue Eagles will travel to Monroe County.