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Mustang rally: MA defeats Sardis, 10-6

The Madison Academy Mustangs had to pull some tricks out of the bag Friday night to defeat the Sardis Lions, and that’s exactly what they did.

Down 6-3 in the fourth quarter, Madison Academy quarterback Joe Dobson connected with backup quarterback/wide receiver Chris Clouser, who then threw to a wide open Hunter Olive for the double pass with 10:20 remaining to seal the come-from-behind victory, 10-6.

“We had a couple of tricks up our sleeve, and it came through for us,” Madison Academy head coach Eric Cohu said.

Clouser credited the coaches for calling the right play at the right time.

“We’ve been practicing that a lot this week,” Clouser said. “I didn’t think that (Olive) was going to be that wide open.”

Although things ended on a bright note for the Mustangs’ offense, they did not start out that way.

In the first quarter, the Mustangs punted three times, but fortunately for Madison Academy the defense held strong each time and also forced the Lions to punt three times.

On the Lions’ third punt of the opening quarter, Kam Jackson returned it 75 yards for the score, but the play was called back for a block in the back.

After the drive stalled to open the second quarter, another special team miscue cost the Mustangs as the punt snap sailed over punter Bennett Smith’s head, and the Lions scored three plays later on a 3-yard keeper by senior Jonathan McBrayer to put Sardis up 6-0 after the missed extra point by Jeff Snead.

“We’ve got to clean up a lot of sloppy mistakes,” Cohu said.

Madison Academy running back Jake Hamlett fumbled on the ensuing possession, and it was recovered by Sardis’ Dan Williams, but the Mustang defense held strong again on a fourth-down run on the next possession to get the ball back.

In the second half, Smith recovered a Sardis fumbled to give the Mustangs possession, but Dobson’s 75-yard strike to Olive failed to produce a touchdown, and Madison Academy had to settle for a 34-yard Smith field goal.

The Mustangs had one more chance in the fourth to add to the lead, but Smith’s 39-yard field goal attempt fell short.

The Lions’ defense had one last shot to hold the Mustangs on a 3rd –and- 9 play with less than 2 minutes remaining, but Dobson escaped the pocket and scampered 30 yards to seal the win.

The Mustangs (1-1, 1-0) return to action Sept. 10 as they travel to take on Randolph for the first time in varsity football in more than three decades.

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