Golden Bears close season with tough loss

MT. JULIET — Mt. Juliet closed its season with a tough loss 19-14 to Oakland in the opening round of the Class 6A playoffs Friday night. "I am proud of our kids," Mt. Juliet coach Roger Perry said after his Golden Bears ended a 9-2 season which started 9-0. "We battled all year. We played we...
Nov 8, 2009

Mt. Juliet's Cody Harrison, front, Teraes Clemmons [21] and Vaughn Cornelia watch the final seconds of their season tick away. Photo by GEORGE PAGE

MT. JULIET — Mt. Juliet closed its season with a tough loss 19-14 to Oakland in the opening round of the Class 6A playoffs Friday night.
"I am proud of our kids," Mt. Juliet coach Roger Perry said after his Golden Bears ended a 9-2 season which started 9-0. "We battled all year. We played well enough defensively. We just did not make the plays."
It was a field-position game early as the Bears started their first two drives at their 11- and 1-yard line, respectively.
On the Golden Bears' second drive, after a false-start penalty moved the ball back to the 9, quarterback Reed Gurchiek went back to pass in the end zone but Oakland's rush came and sacked the normally elusive senior for a safety giving the Patriots an early 2-0 lead.
After the free kick from the 20, Oakland got the football at the Golden Bear 48. It only took one snap but Tee Mayberry got into the secondary and raced to the end zone for the touchdown making it a 9-0 score.
Mt. Juliet got the ball right back and drove it down for its first score of the night. The key play was a pass from Gurchiek to Vaughn Cornelia of 49 yards placing the ball at the 1. From there, Brady Earnhardt plowed in for the touchdown and with the extra point the score was 9-7.
Oakland was driving for a score in the second quarter but put the football on the ground where the Golden Bears pounced on it.
After a Golden Bear punt, Oakland took the ball at the 45 and drove inside the 15 where the drive stalled. Trevor Hornsby was called on to attempt a 28-yard field goal which he banged through and the score at halftime was 12-7 in favor of Oakland.
Oakland recieved the second-half kickoff and ran nearly eight minutes off the clock, scoring on a short run from Mayberry. His second touchdown of the night made it 19-7.
Mt.Juliet was not done yet. The Bears went on an 83-yard, nine-play drive. The key play was a 28-yard hookup from Gurchiek to Cornelia that put the ball at the 5. After a penalty on Oakland moved it to the 2; the Golden Bears banged it in on a short run from Chris Bazile and the score was 19-14 late in the third quarter.
Oakland's next drive stalled after three penalties on the Patriots. Two false starts and a personal foul moved the ball back near the 40. A field-goal attempt from Hornsby fell short and Mt. Juliet returned it to the 46.
A big run by Bazile and a penalty on Oakland moved the ball to the 20. A short run on first down put the ball at the 17. On second down, Gurchiek tried to get a ball to Cornelia but it was off his fingertips incomplete. On third down, Gurchiek went to the corner, but the pass was dropped. On fourth down, Gurchiek's pass fell incomplete and Oakland took over on downs.
From there, Oakland ran out the clock with plays to Mayberry and Zach Barnes. With less than a minute left Oakland took a knee ran out the clock and got the victory as last year's 5A-champion Patriots advanced to 9-2 and a second-round game at Cookeville, which ousted Franklin County 21-11.
"We felt after halftime that we needed to go to our run  game more and we were more physical up front. We executed very well in the second half," Oakland coach Thomas McDaniel said.

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