Opelika (6-1, R-4-1) clinched a playoff spot by defeating Northview 34-20 last Friday night at Bulldog Stadium. OHS came out of the locker room ready to play — scoring 20 straight points on their way to a 34-7 halftime lead.
It was the first game in Bulldog Stadium since Sept. 2 and it was Homecoming. The win was overshadowed by injuries to four starters, quarterback Calvin Bryant, tightend Tony Phillpot, corner back LaQuin Snipes and defensive tackle Torey Agee.
Bryant was five for six passing with 112 yards before injuring his ankle midway through the second quarter. The other three players were hurt during the first half as well.
Coach Brian Blackmon called on his reserves to play the entire second half to ensure no other starter would get hurt in the blowout.
The status of the four players were not known at press time but coach Blackmon said they were doubtful.
The Dawgs took a 7-0 lead when Bryant threw a 25-yard pass to Braden Rogers in the corner of the end zone for a touchdown and a 7-0 lead after Will Black added the PAT. Cameron Hill scored the second touchdown on a 59-yard run with 5:26 remaining in the first quarter to make it 14-0 after Black’s PAT. Calvin Bryant hooked up with Ikeem Colquit for a 64-yard touchdown pass after the defense stopped the Cougars on fourth down to increase the lead to 20-0. Black then missed his first extra point of the year. The next touchdown was scored by Jakell Mitchell after catching a seven-yard pass from Bryant. Calvin then threw his fourth TD pass to Ikeem Colquit, Ikeem’s second touchdown receiving, for 25 yards. Black added both PAT’s to make it 34-7.
The second half saw the reserves getting playing time and preparing them for future games. Cameron Hill finished with 92 yards rushing on eight carries, Colquit caught three passes for 100 yards, Rogers had two receptions for 30 yards and threw two passes for 55 yards.
The Bulldogs held Northview to 44 yards rushing on 32 carries.
“I think we were ready to play, we were loose in the pregame and had a great week of practice,” Blackmon said after the game.
During the post game interview on his radio show Blackmon made these comments about the game: “We’ve got a big game in front of us. We are sitting here at 6-1 and it feels pretty good to be where we are right now. We know how big the next one is. We won’t celebrate long, I can tell you that,” he said with a stern voice.
Opelika will host Auburn (6-1, R-4-1) tonight at 7 p.m. at Bulldog Stadium.