Wadley got a firsthand experience of what it's like to try to run the football against Randolph County, and RCHS overcame a mistake-filled night with some big plays as the Tigers defeated the Bulldogs 30-8 Friday.
Wadley's run-oriented offense was held to just 13 yards on 25 carries in the game, but Wadley made things difficult for RCHS early on.
RCHS forced a punt on Wadley's first possession of the game, and the Tigers' return man Dante Jordan took that punt back 73 yards for a 7-0 RCHS lead.
But while the Wadley run game was stagnant the Bulldogs found other ways to do their damage early on. Wadley's Caden Messer blocked an RCHS punt from its own end zone, and the ball went out of bounds under the goalpost for a safety to cut the RCHS lead to 7-2. On the ensuing Wadley possession the Bulldogs took to the air to move down the field as quarterback Lakevian O'Neal connected with receiver Jonathan Poole for plays of 35 and 17 yards, the latter of which resulted in a Wadley touchdown and an 8-7 Wadley advantage.
That lead turned out to be short lived however. RCHS responded with a 59-yard drive that ended in Demarcous Woodgett's 6-yard touchdown run that put RCHS back on top for good.
Jordan added a 47-yard touchdown run before the half, and RCHS iced it with a 23-yard pass for six from Braxton Daniel to Woodgett. That play put the RCHS lead at 30-8 with just over eight minutes left in the game, Wadley muffed the ensuing kickoff and RCHS took over and nearly ran out the clock.
Jordan finished with 119 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries to lead the Tigers' rush offense.
Daniel, playing as a backup to injured starting quarterback Damarcus Davis, completed 5-of-6 passes for 92 yards and a touchdown.
RCHS won despite committing 15 penalties for 115 yards.
O'Neal and Poole accounted for most of the offense for Wadley. O'Neal finished 4-of-6 passing for 85 yards, and Poole caught three of those balls for 69 yards and a touchdown.
Wadley also finally discovered where it will play in the first round of the playoffs. The Bulldogs' loss to RCHS, plus Prattville Christian's loss to Horseshoe Bend gave Notasulga the nod in the three-way tie for second place. Wadley dropped to fourth in the region and will travel to Isabella for its first-round playoff game next week.
RCHS will be at home against Midfield for its first-round game.
Clay Central 40, Handley 21- Devontae Houston went over the 2,000-yard mark for the season, but came up just short of the Handley school record of 2,052 rushing yards in a season. Houston finished with 103 yards and a touchdown on 31 carries and now stands at 2,035 yards for year. He should set a new Handley record next week when Handley hosts West Blocton in round one of the 4A playoffs.
Central will host Sardis in Class 5A's first round next week.
Ranburne 48, White Plains 34 – Ranburne finishes 9-1 and will play host to Cold Springs in round one of the 2A playoffs next week.
Donoho 35, Woodland 6 – Woodland's season ends with a record of 1-9.