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Alief Taylor Smacks FB Austin

Sugar Land- A week after a gut wrenching loss to Fort Bend Hightower 10-7, the Alief Taylor Lions smacked down the Fort Bend Austin Bulldogs on Thursday night at Mercer stadium, 27-8. The win improves the Lions to 7-2 on the year and 6-1 in District 23-6A with only a matchup against winless Fort Bend Clements next Friday before the playoffs.

Juan Aguilar kicked off for Taylor and the Lions forced a quick 3-and-out for quarterback Andrew Chadderdon and the Bulldogs. The teams then traded possessions before the Lions struck first.

Quarterback Dontay Warren found Jeremiah Haydel on first down for 11 yards down to the 30. The Austin defense stiffened with Griffin Weinstein making play after play for the Bulldogs harassing both Warren and running back Emon Pought.  Weinstein and the Bulldog defense forced a 4th and 1.  The Lions opted to go for it  and Pought converted with a 14 yard gainer down to the 7 yard line. Warren scored two plays later with a 1 yard keeper, 7-0 Lions.

Fort Bend Austin had a good scoring opportunity robbed from them in the middle of the second quarter. After a bad Taylor punt, the Bulldogs started at the Lion 49 yard line. A receiver pass from Darryl Layton to running back Orryn Nicholson seemed like an easy touchdown with Nicholson alone streaking down the middle of the field but the pass went long. After a 7 yard sack on 3rd and 17, Chadderdon targeted a Bulldog receiver covered up by cornerback Benji Franklin who made a beautiful interception.

Franklin showed off his play making ability once again, taking a 67 yard punt return back to the Bulldog 12 yard line right before halftime. On 3rd and goal at the four, Junior running back, Jesse Walker ran to the wide side of the field and picked up 3 tough yards before being stopped short of the end zone. On 4th and goal with 23 seconds left, Warren barreled in for his second 1 yard TD. The PAT was missed giving the Lions a  13-0 lead going into the break.

Taylor scored again on the first possession on the second half, this time Pought scored on a 4 yarder.  This time, a 2 point conversion failed but Alief Taylor stretched their lead to 19-0.

Taylor was threatening again on their next possession but Darius Milton intercepted Warren in the end zone. Fort Bend Austin then drove 80 yards for their only score of the night on the legs of Nicholson and Mekhi Clowers. Chadderdon once again challenged Benji Franklin, this time getting the better of him, connecting on the only pass of the drive to Darrius Milton. Clowers got behind his offensive line and found a hole for a 5 yard touchdown run. On the 2 point conversion the holder, Angel Leal, acted as the quarterback and ran the option pitching to the long snapper Connor Adams (who is looking to walk on at Alabama) for the conversion, 19-8.

Pought ended the scoring on the night with another 4 yard run. The Lions converted this time for 2 points and the final score of 27-8. Taylor is assured of a playoff spot sitting at 2nd in district play only behind the Hightower Hurricanes who are undefeated on the season.

by Glenn McCarthy

Players of the game- running back Emon Pought and cornerback/return man Benji Franklin

Team 1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
Alief Taylor 7 6 6 8  - 27
Fort Bend Austin 0 0 8 0  - 8

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