WATERTOWN — Watertown had two running backs go over the century mark in a 20-14 victory over Jackson County in the regular-season finale Friday night at Robinson Stadium.
Brannon Hill carried the ball 23 times for 124 yards. Keandre Bates had 15 carries for 110 yards. Each back had a touchdown.
Also on the night, quarterback Ty Jobe ran for 56 yards on eight carries and threw a touchdown pass for a tying score in the third quarter as the Purple Tigers kept
their playoff hopes alive.
"We have not had two backs go over 100 yards in a long time." Watertown coach Gavin Webster said after his Tigers snapped a four-game losing streak to finish 4-6. "We challenged them at halftime to set the tone in the second half."
The scoring began as the Purple Tigers took their opening possession and scored, moving the ball down the field with their ground game. The drive was 83 yards and
took seven plays. Hill scored on a 20-yard run.
Jackson County came right back as Blake Bowman scored from 7 yards out. The scoring drive was six plays and covered 68 yards and the score was tied at 7.
Before the end of the half, Jackson County ran a draw play with Bowman and he raced 67 yards down to the 2-yard line. Watertown held the Blue Devils
out of the end zone until third down when Jeret Goad snuck over from a yard to make the score 14-7 in favor of the Blue Devils at intermission.
Watertown took the second-half kickoff and ran nearly three minutes off the clock before scoring on a pass from Jobe to Jacob Anderson of 29 yards. With the extra point,
the score was tied at 14.
Jobe finished the night 8-of-16 passing for 121 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions.
In the final stanza, Watertown scored on an 81-yard drive that took six plays.
On a second-down play, Bates cut left, went down the sideline and got into the end zone to give Watertown the lead with a little less than seven minutes to go at
Watertown attempted to run out the clock but Jobe threw an interception to Bowman, giving the Blue Devils the ball at the 27-yard line. Jackson County took the ball
and got into position in Watertown territory. On a fourth-down pass, a lineman knocked the ball down to give it back to the Tigers, who ran out the clock for their fourth victory of the season.
Jackson County dropped to 6-4 with the loss. The Blue Devils will be in the playoffs for the first time since 1996, when current Cumberland coach Dewayne Alexander led them, and have a winning season for the first time since 1982.
Playoffs pairings are due to be released on TSSAA.org at noon today.