Updated Fri, Oct 26, 2012 11:42 pm
The rivalry between Jackson and Gallia Academy lived up to the hype Friday night, coming down to the final minutes in a close 30-27 Blue Devil victory.
With 6:40 remaining in the fourth quarter, Jackson took the lead for the first time all game. Their 27-23 lead was quickly erased when the Ironmen fumbled the ball with four minutes remaining, and the Blue Devils completed a game winning drive.
With running back Ty Warnimont out with an ankle injury, the Blue Devils were looking for other players to step up to fill in for the big play back.
They received that production early and often.
In the first five minutes, Gallia Academy’s Nick Clagg dove into the end zone on a nine-yard rushing touchdown to give the Blue Devils the early lead. The momentum building play set the tone for the entire game.
Jackson, who had outscored the Gallia Academy 96-47 the past three years, wasn’t ready to give up.
Six minutes later it was Steven Kearns who put the Ironmen on the board. On a key 4th-and-five situation, Kearns rolled to the left and hurdled a Blue Devil defender to run for a nine-yard touchdown.
The Jackson offense ran through Kearns. The quarterback finished the night with 48 passing yards and 168 yards on the ground with four touchdowns. His four touchdowns were not enough, as the Blue Devils received some help from Gridiron Glory Player of the Year finalist Wade Jerrell.
The quarterback passed for 77 yards and ran for 133 yards along with two touchdowns. Jerrell’s success on the ground along with Cody Russell’s 95 rushing yards was too much to stop for Jackson.
The victory gave the Gallia Academy seniors their first win against Jackson, and the Blue Devils the outright SEOAL season title.