Pike County drops region clash at Opp

Published 10:09 pm Friday, September 22, 2023

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The Pike County Bulldogs (2-2, 2-2) lost a Class 3A, Region 2 matchup with the Opp Bobcats (2-3, 2-2) on the road on Friday night by a score of 22-13.

Pike County struggled to muster any offense on the night, tallying just 74 total yards to Opp’s 185 yards, which all came on the ground. Pike County also turned the ball over three times and was penalized 10 times.

Things got off to a hot start for the Dawgs, however, as PCHS forced an Opp fumble on the very first play, which Markelis Hobdy scooped up and drove deep into Bobcat territory. A few plays later, quarterback Omari Barrow scored on a 13-yard run, giving PCHS a 7-0 lead with 9:44 left in the opening period.

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After the two sides exchanged punts, Opp got on the scoreboard with a 4-yard run from Jaymaryon Allen. The two-point conversion gave the Cats an 8-7 lead with 4:13 left in the first quarter.

In the second quarter, the Pike County defense forced another fumble but Barrow was intercepted on the very next play deep in PCHS territory. Opp would eventually find the end-zone again on a 1-yard run from Colby Ballard. The two-point try was no good and the Bobcats led 13-0 at halftime.

After a Pike County fumble to open the third quarter, Colby Ballard scored another touchdown for Opp to extend the Bobcat lead to 20-7 with 6:14 left in the third quarter.

With Pike County struggling to get any offense going, Braylin Jackson breathed new life into the Dawgs with an exciting 70-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to cut the lead to 20-13 after a failed PAT.

Both defenses dug in at that point and each side turned the ball over on downs multiple times. Late in the game, Pike County’s defense forced back-to-back turnover on downs deep in PCHS territory but neither time the Pike County offense was able to get any momentum going.

With under two minutes remaining, a low snap on a Pike County punt attempt sailed through the end-zone to give Opp a safety and a 22-13 lead, which would seal the win for the Bobcats.

Que Carter led the PCHS offense with 33 yards on eight carries, while Jackson caught five passes for 22 yards. Barrow completed 4-of-14 passes for 22 yards and an interception along with a rushing touchdown.

On defense, Markelis Hobdy tallied 12 tackles, one tackle-for-loss and a fumble recovery, while Joseph Wilkerson earned 11 tackles and one quarterback hurry. Bubba Wilson also totaled 10 tackles and 1.5 tackles-for-loss, while Zaikeilen Adams earned seven tackles, one tackle-for-loss and a fumble recovery.

For Opp, Ballard rushed for 56 yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries, while Allen rushed for 72 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries. Zeb Green also rushed for 54 yards on 22 carries.

Pike County is back at home on Sept. 29 for a non-region game against Class 5A Headland.