Central Lions go toe-to-toe with number one in region, fall to Elba 62-34

Published 1:27 pm Saturday, October 7, 2017

By Fred Guarino

The Lowndes Signal

The Central Lions scored 34 points on Elba, currently the number one team in 2A Region 3 with a record of 5-1-0 overall and 3-0 in region play, in a losing effort 62-34.

Email newsletter signup

Despite the loss, Central head football coach Quinn Hambrite found good reason to be proud of his team for the second half fight.

The loss dropped the Lions to 2-4 overall and 2-2 regional play and currently a number five ranking in Class 2A Region 3.

Elba got off to a fast start due to what Hambrite called “a lot of missed tackles by us… simple, missed tackles.’

Elba Tigers led the Lions 24-0 in the first quarter before Central scored its first touchdown on a 60-yard pass from Keegan Blackman to Justin Taylor to make it a 6-24 ballgame early in the second quarter.

The halftime score was 6-40.

The Lions made it a 14-40 contest on the first drive of the second half on a 20-yard scramble by Blackman after a 70-yard drive and 2-point conversion catch by Diontavious Holcombe.

The Lions scored their third touchdown came on a 25- yard pass to Ma’Lek Hill and a 2-point conversion catch by Hill to make it a 22-48 score  and again on a 20-yard reception by David Baldwin to make it a 28-48 score in the third quarter.

The Lions got their final touchdown on an 80-yard reception by Baldwin in the fourth quarter in route to  a 34-62 final.

Hambrite said his team “played their hearts out in the second half.” And he said, “I couldn’t have been more proud of them.”

He said, “Defensively we have to be discipline with our eyes and accept coaching. And we have to make tackles. It’s hard to break old, bad habits, and I’ve realized that this is taking longer than anticipated, but we are making progress.”

He said, “Offensively, we have weapons, and I will continue to try to get them the ball.”

Hambrite said the run game has come to a halt because of injuries on the offensive line.  But he said, “We have to get it going to win games.”

The Central coach said the team was without six players Friday, “And going into a game with the number one team in the region, you can’t make the mistakes we made plus not have all players on deck.”

Hambrite concluded, “Nonetheless, I’m proud of the fight we showed in the second half.”

The Lions travel to play the number two ranked team in the region, Goshen, on Friday, Oct. 13 for another regional contest.