Sports

October 12, 2013

Bruins strike early, but battle breaks out

TUNNEL HILL — A night that was beginning to look like a rout turned into a heavyweight match in which both teams were trading haymakers back and forth.

Then it turned into heartbreak for one, and jubilation for another.

Kiko Rodriguez’s 25-yard field goal as time expired gave Dalton a 31-28 victory and ruined Northwest Whitfield’s dreams of an undefeated season. And while the sting of losing at home to the rival Catamounts will linger, there is still plenty of football remaining for the Bruins.

“This doesn’t end our season,” Northwest coach Josh Robinson said.

It was a night of pendulum swings for the Bruins (5-1, 1-1 in Sub-region 7A-4A). Northwest bolted out to a 14-0 lead and had a chance to go up two touchdowns again later in the game, but Dalton cornerback Jordan McKinney had a perfect-coverage interception in the end zone. The Catamounts (4-2, 2-0) responded with the tying score, and it was each offense hammering the opposing defense for the rest of the game.

“We gave up the big plays,” Northwest safety and wide receiver Andy Whisenant said. “That was what beat us. We beat ourselves. I am not taking anything away from Dalton because that was a hard-fought game from both sides. We just didn’t make the play when we needed to.”

Giving up that 14-0 lead was the difference, Robinson said.

Quarterback Payton Veraldi had a 55-yard run that set up Dalton’s first score, and a 46-yard completion from Veraldi to Peter Sigmon set up the second.

“Two long plays in the first half,” Robinson said. “You can’t do it. You can’t give those up.”

Neither Dalton nor Northwest was able to effectively slow the other offense down. They just made them change the tactics to move the ball.

Dalton’s defense was designed to contain the Northwest passing game with a pair of deep safeties, man coverage on the perimeter and rushing just three linemen most of the night. It showed as well with the Bruins using their running game more than they had all year. They rushed for 40 times for 184 yards.

Northwest’s defensive front was geared to take running back Kelvis Rhodes’ off-tackle carries away. In doing so, the middle was open and Veraldi’s quarterback sneak became a crucial part of Dalton’s game plan.

But despite the loss, Northwest still has three games remaining in the sub-region with the region crossover games and a possible spot in the state playoffs still to work for.

“We just have to keep going,” Whisenant said. “We need to get back to work on Monday.”

1
Text Only
Sports
  • NW at SE soccer   5  mlh.jpg On to the title match

    With around 15 minutes left in Thursday’s Region 7-4A semifinals match, Northwest Whitfield High School’s boys soccer team increased pressure on Southeast Whitfield with hopes of a tying goal.
    But the host Raiders were the ones getting the late goal.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • DHS tennis day 2 2 mlh.jpg Prep tennis: Perfect Colts claim title in Region 5-3A

    Coahulla Creek High School’s boys tennis team only needed three years to win its first region championship.

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • Heritage at DHS baseball 3 mlh.jpg Prep baseball: Cats must win today to clinch No. 2 seed

    Dalton High School’s baseball team led 6-5 against visiting Heritage-Catoosa as late as the fifth inning with a chance to clinch second place in Sub-region 7B-4A.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Region track and field: Richardson paces Murray Co. girls

    Katlyn Richardson has had an impressive junior season for Murray County High School’s girls track and field team.

    April 17, 2014

  • Colts boys have shot at 3A golf state sectional

    Coahulla Creek High School’s boys golf team finished second in the Region 5-3A tournament at Calhoun’s Fields Ferry Golf Course on Thursday, but now the Colts will have to wait to see if they will advance to the Class 2A state sectional tournament.

    April 17, 2014

  • CHS Lowe_Bartley 3 mlh.jpg Let’s keep playing

    Academic offerings played a big part in which college football program nabbed Christian Heritage School’s Nich Bartley, one of the area’s top players in 2013.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prep roundup: Coahulla Creek hurts N. Murray’s playoff hopes

    One play in the fifth inning, during which the sun got in pitcher Braiden Jacobs’ eyes, seemed to encapsulate the entire season for Coahulla Creek High School’s baseball team.
    But it could be one rule misinterpretation that defines the season for North Murray.

    April 17, 2014

  • NW region tennis 3 mlh.jpg Region tennis roundup: Six area teams clinch spots in state

    Dalton High School’s tennis teams finished their business quickly on the first day of the Region 7-4A tournament.
    Coach David Hilley had no problem with that.

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • Region track day 2 2 mlh.jpg All the way to the top

    En route to the Region 7-4A track and field championship Wednesday as the host school, Dalton High’s boys team found out what a difference a year makes.

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • Area middle school roundup: CHS girls soccer team earns shutout win

    Olivia Idom had the lone goal as Christian Heritage’s middle school girls soccer team beat Gladden 1-0 on Monday.

    April 17, 2014