By Morgan Bryce
Beulah ended its regular season in dominating fashion Thursday night, walloping the overmatched McKenzie Tigers 54-7.
The Bobcats’ consistent rushing attack and opportunistic defense helped generate a 33-0 halftime lead, and they never looked back.
McKenzie got on the board in the fourth quarter to avoid a shutout, but it was not enough to diminish Beulah’s season highs in scoring and largest margin of victory at 44 points. Beulah’s previous largest margin of victory came in a 36-0 rain-shortened contest v. Ellwood Christian Aug. 31.
Beulah finished with 366 yards of total offense, with 306 of that total coming on the ground. Chris Person rushed nine times for 100 yards and a touchdown and Caden Dowdell carried the ball six times for 70 yards and another score.
Lonzie Portis and Colt Abney both took snaps at quarterback, combining to go 4-of-6 passing for 60 yards and two TDs.
Defensively, freshman Stanley Washington led the way, finishing with seven tackles and a fumble recovery. Dowdell, Owen Kelly and L.C. Moore notched six, five and four tackles, respectively.
Freshman Sondrekious Cooper was a special teams standout for the Bobcats, returning a kickoff 60 yards for a score. Abney booted a 43-yard punt and Austin Billingsley successfully converted 6-of-8 extra-point attempts.
With the win, the Bobcats improve to 8-2 overall, the most wins in a season since the 1995 season when they finished 9-2 and made an appearance in the first round of the playoffs.
Beulah will face Thomasville in the first round of AHSAA State 3A playoffs this Friday at Bobcat Stadium, their first playoff appearance since the 2008 season. The Tigers also sport an 8-2 record and have won five of their last six games.
Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. C.S.T. Bobcat Stadium is located at 4848 Lee Road 270 in Valley.