ADDISON – It was homecoming on the campus of Addison High School Friday night as the Bulldogs welcomed the Vinemont Eagles to town. The Eagles gave Addison all they could handle but ultimately came up a touchdown short as the Bulldogs held on 43-36 to remain undefeated.
Vinemont fired the opening shot in what turned out to be a shootout. Eagle quarterback Garrett Boland wasted no time showing that he was just as dangerous with his arm as he is with his feet, hooking up with wide receiver Seth Campbell for 7 yards. Boland then called his own number for the first time on the night, busting a 5-yard run up the gut. The returning Deke Wright made his presence felt early in the drive with back-to-back carries for a total of 10 hard-earned yards. Boland then found his favorite target on the night, Colby Nicholas, for a pair of completions down to the Bulldog 36. After three straight rushes, the Eagles went back to the air with Boland connecting with Nathanial England for a 17-yard touchdown strike to the near side of the end zone. Following the PAT, Vinemont took a 7-0 lead.
Addison answered the Vinemont score with one of their own on their first possession of the game. Noah Rice got the Bulldogs going with a 9-yard pitch and catch to Braxton Preuitt. Aided by a pass interference call, Addison quickly moved the ball all the way down to the Vinemont 41. Three plays later Rice showed he was a duel threat QB as well, blasting through the line and down the left sideline for 20 yards. He added a 16-yard scamper and a 6-yard carry before giving way to Zeb Maze who broke the plane from 3 yards out. Addison added the PAT to knot the game at 7-7. Following a shanked Vinemont punt, Addison set up shop at the Eagle 32.
Just eight seconds into the second quarter, Addison was in the end zone again thanks to the legs of Rice taking the ball in from 4 yards out. They converted the 2-point play and took a 15-7 lead. Vinemont answered back with a 57-yard, 11-play drive. Boland got the drive started with a 6-yard pickup. He found Nicholas for a 9-yard pickup on fourth down to keep the drive alive and proceeded to march his team down the field leading to a 1-yard sneak up the middle for the score. The Eagles matched the Bulldogs with a 2-point conversion of their own to tie the score at 15 all.
The Bulldogs took the lead right back on the next possession, with a huge 44-yard run up the far sideline from William Guthrie to put Addison back on top. The PAT was no good, giving Addison a 21-15 advantage. Vinemont turned the ball over on downs their next possession and the Bulldogs took advantage. Guthrie and Maze did the heavy lifting with Maze finding the end zone on a 3-yard plunge allowing Addison to take a 28-15 advantage into the halftime break.
Addison extended their lead just two plays into the third quarter when Rice took a handoff from Bryant Ridgeway and raced 55 yards for the score. After the PAT, Addison enjoyed a 35-15 advantage.
Not a team to ever give up or go away, Vinemont came roaring back. Starting from their own 28, Wright got the Eagles going in the right direction with an 8-yard carry. Two plays later Boland hit Cody Stewart for a 37-yard screen pass to move the ball to the Bulldog 21. From here it was a battle of attrition, a battle Vinemont won when Boland found Carter out of the backfield for an 11-yard touchdown to make the score 35-21.
Addison went backward in their next drive, turning the ball over on downs and it was the Eagles’ turn to make them pay. Vinemont moved the ball down the field in the waning seconds of the third quarter and into the fourth quarter culminating in a 19-yard touchdown run from Wright on an option pitch to make the score 35-28.
Following a three and out coupled with a shanked punt, Vinemont found themselves with the ball on their own 45 with 6:30 on the clock but wasted no time scoring when Boland found Nicholas on a 53-yard streak pass down the near sideline to pull the Eagles within a point. The PAT was good but Addison was flagged on the play, inching Vinemont closer where they opted to go for two. The Eagles converted and took their first lead since the first quarter, 36-35.
After a good return, the Bulldogs started in Vinemont’s side of the field at the 40. Content to move the ball slowly and leave the Eagles no time on the clock, Addison ate close to four minutes of clock on their way to a seven-play drive for the score, a 3-yard rush by Garrett Wood, to put Addison on top 43-36. This was the last score of the game as Addison held on to win.
Addison has a short turnaround as they travel to Decatur Heritage Thursday night. Vinemont will travel to Priceville Friday night.
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