UMS-Wright Does No Wrong In Winning 4A Title

UMS-Wright blasted Cherokee County 41-7 to win the Class 4A state title.

Birmingham, Ala.--It was the newcomer against the grizzled veteran for the Class 4A crown as Cherokee County took on UMS-Wright and once again experience proved to be huge. Led by the running of sophomore Christopher Dukes and the passing combo of Bragg Foshee to William Reaves, UMS dominated from start to finish as they racked up 489 yards of offense in winning 41-7 on a cold night at Legion Field.

On the ground Dukes was dominating, running for 164 yards and two touchdowns on 27 carries and not playing any in the fourth quarter. Foshee completed 12-14 passes for 232 yards and one touchdown while Reaves caught eight passes for 181 yards and a score. They were the main catalysts behind the fourth title for UMS-Wright in the last eight years under coach Terry Curtis.

Christopher Dukes will be a player to watch down the road for the Bulldogs.

It didn't take long for the Bulldogs to show their teeth in this one as, following an interception on their own three yard line, they drove 97 yards on eight plays with Nicholas Laskay plunging over from the one to make it 7-0. With the defense doing a number of talented junior quarterback Coty Blanchard from Cherokee County, UMS extended the lead in the second quarter as Foshee hit Reaves for a 36-yard score to push the lead to 14.

The Bulldogs continued the onslaught with a short four-play, 35-yard drive four minutes later as Brandon Lee scored from the six to make it 21-0 at the break. That's when Dukes took over the game. First he scored from 26 yards out with 6:44 left and followed that up with a five-yard jaunt two minutes later to put the game out of reach at 35-0. UMS tacked on a touchdown early in the fourth quarter, but missed the extra point to make the score 41-0. Cherokee County finally got on the board with a late touchdown run, but it was too little and much too late.

The Bulldogs dominated the first half against the undefeated Warriors as they totaled 294 yards of offense in taking a 21-0 lead. On the ground Dukes had 92 yards on 17 carries, but the story was the combination of Foshee and Reaves. In the first half alone Foshee completed 8-10 passes for 184 yards and a touchdown. Reaves caught six of those passes for 167 yards, which set the single game receiving record for a 4A game in just a half of football. He finished the game with eight receptions for 181 yards.

For Cherokee County, Blanchard was the only story in the first half. Although he didn't get his team into the end zone, Blanchard ran for 52 yards on eight carries and completed 3-6 passes for 28 yards. He finished the night 7-16 for 77 yards and two interceptions. The Warriors had just 116 yards of offense at intermission and finished with only 189 yards of total offense for the game.

Friday the action gets underway at 3 p.m. with Sweet Water taking on Speake. That's followed by Vigor vs. Russellville at 7 p.m.

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