Two good teams, each roared like a Lion.
Only one victor but both teams were tryin’.
Enticing smells, big sounds and colorful sights.
Small town excitement under Friday night lights.
First home game of the football season.
Even though we lost the event was pleasin’.
Penalties, injuries and a few big plays.
Reminding older men of their younger days.
Gridiron glory, it comes and goes.
What happens next, nobody knows.
The BG Lions are like a well-tuned diesel.
Homecoming next, look out Riesel!
Blooming Grove – submitted by Chris Forgey
The Blooming Grove Lions took on the Grapevine Faith Christian Lions on Friday night at Blooming Grove Lions Stadium. Both teams came into the game undefeated, 3-0. Blooming Grove defeated their first three opponents by an average score of 51 to 7, all relatively easy victories. This game would prove to be the biggest challenge of the season so far for the Lions.
BG stuck first with a 30-yard field goal by Sr. Tyler Ellis in the 1st quarter. The opening period ended with a 40+ yard pass play for Grapevine Faith that put them in BG territory.
Grapevine Faith scored a touchdown early in the 2nd quarter to take the lead, 7-3. A few minutes later the Lions pinned Grapevine Faith deep in their own territory. At their own 2-yard line Grapevine Faith was called for an offensive foul. By rule, the Lions were awarded a safety, cutting Grapevine Faith’s lead to 7-5.
Late in the 2nd quarter BG took the lead back with a Tyler Baumgartner TD making the score 12-7 in favor of BG. BG led at the half, 12-7.
The first half was mostly a defensive battle with both teams jockeying for field position. The second half would take on a much different tone.
Early in the 3rd quarter, Sr. Brandon Hays scored a TD to give BG the lead 19-7.
Grapevine Faith quickly answered with a TD to cut the lead to 19-14.
On the next drive, the only turnover of the game happened when QB Tyler Ellis was intercepted but the return was cut short by a devastating hit by BG’s center, Sr. Robert Tovar.
Brandon Hays was injured on the play but returned to the game. On the ensuing drive, Grapevine Faith scored a TD to retake the lead, 20-19. A successful 2-point conversion made the score 22-19, giving Grapevine Faith a 3-point lead into the final period. There were more first downs gained in the 3rd quarter than in the first two quarters combined.
At the end of the 3rd quarter, Jr. Tyler Baumgartner had a big run to set up BG with excellent field position.
As exciting as the 3rd quarter was, there was still a lot of football to play.
Juanya Pyburn 60 yard kick return. Photo by Cindie Phipps
Early in the 4th quarter, Sr. QB Tyler Ellis scored to give BG the lead, 26-22.
But the BG lead would be short-lived. Grapevine Faith swiped the lead away with a TD catch by Jr. Kyle Dendy. A botched extra point attempt kept the Grapevine Faith lead at 28-26. On BG’s next drive they managed a Tyler Ellis 25-yard FG to retake the lead midway through the 4th quarter, 29-28. Grapevine Faith went to work on offense late in the 4th quarter with multiple productive plays, including a long run by So. Keyshawn Wyatt, who was bound for the end zone but was stopped short on a TD-saving play by Jr. Brody Owens.
On the next play Grapevine Faith took the lead for good when So. QB Cam Roane scampered in for a TD on a short run, making the score Grapevine Faith 34, Blooming Grove 29.
BG quickly took the ball downfield and threatened to score with less than a minute to play but their drive stalled deep in Grapevine Faith territory on an incomplete pass. The game ended with Grapevine Faith taking over on downs and running out the remaining seconds on the clock with a kneel-down on the final play of the game.
Both teams committed multiple penalties, especially in the 2nd half. Holding and illegal procedure were called several times against each team in the 3rd and 4th quarters. Each team received an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. However, each offensive unit was able to move the ball productively and score in spite of the referee’s setbacks. Blooming Grove had a handful of injuries but none seemed to be serious.
The Lions had several standout players. Jr. Juanya Pyburn was a workhorse for BG with more all-purpose yards than any other player on the field. Pyburn had some strong runs, caught several passes and put the Lions in good field position with some outstanding returns on special teams. Pyburn was injured briefly on an end zone pass attempt in the 4th quarter but returned to the game after sitting out one play. Sr. Brandon Hays was a key contributor, scoring two touchdowns. Sr. QB Tyler Ellis engineered the offense and kicking game for the Lions and was in on all BG scoring. The Lions’ defensive line did a good job of putting pressure on Grapevine Faith QB, So. Cam Roane, who was ultimately successful in putting the visiting team in a position to win the game and who scored the winning touchdown.
The game had seven lead changes, a stark contrast to what the Lions had experienced in their first three games. The Lions face Riesel next week, Friday, September 26th at 7:30 pm in Blooming Grove. This will be their Homecoming and the Lions will certainly be looking to get back on the winning track. The next two games are at home before going on the road against Palmer on Friday, October 17th.
– Chris Forgey
SCORING BY QUARTERS:
Grapevine Faith – 0 – 7 – 15 – 12 – TOTAL 34
Lions – 3 – 9 – 7 – 10 – TOTAL 29
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