PREP FOOTBALL PLAYOFFS: Raiders come up short on the road against Oneonta, 37-29

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Good Hope's Tanner Malin finished with 254 passing yards and two scores. He added 109 more on the ground and a pair of touchdowns during the Raiders' 37-29 loss to Oneonta. (Sammy Confer for The Cullman Tribune)

ONEONTA, Ala. – Good Hope traveled to Blount County to take on the Oneonta Redskins in round one of the 2019 AHSAA State Football Playoffs. It was a tale of two halves for Good Hope as a late second-half effort fell just short at the end in a 37-29 loss to Oneonta.

The Redskins quickly drove the ball down the field to start out the game and had the ball inside the 10-yard line, but Good Hope’s defense stiffened and held them to a 22-yard field goal as the Redskins took a 3-0 lead with 5:44 remaining in the opening quarter. The Raiders quickly went three-and-out on their opening possession, but the Raider defense forced a punt on its next series. 

Good Hope looked to have scored on its next possession on a 70-yard touchdown from Tanner Malin to Drew Maddox, but it was called back because of an illegal formation penalty. The defense forced a turnover-on-downs on its next possession, but a Good Hope fumble was recovered by the Redskins, and they quickly took advantage, scoring on a 29-yard touchdown run to increase their lead to 10-0 with 6:54 remaining in the first half.

After another Good Hope punt, a 56-yard touchdown run increased the Oneonta lead to 17-0, but the Raiders’ passing attack got going on the next series as Malin found Cole and Drew Maddox to keep the drive going twice. Unfortunately, they turned the ball over on downs and the game went into the half with the Redskins holding on to a 17-0 lead.

Good Hope started out the second half strong; its running attack quickly got going as Malin finished with 48 yards on the ground and found Cole Maddox for a huge first down. Malin finished off the drive with a 1-yard scamper to make it a 17-6 game with 8:13 remaining in the third period. Oneonta, though, had an answer, keeping the Raiders’ defense on the field for more than six minutes, and the drive ended with a 2-yard touchdown run to increase the Redskins’ lead to 24-6 with two minutes remaining in the period.

Big passes from Malin to Drew and Cole Maddox, the latter coming on a fourth-down conversion, kept Oneonta’s defense on its heels and after Colton Bagwell got 12 yards on two straight carries, another 1-yard scamper by Malin helped cut the Good Hope deficit to 24-12 with 10:45 remaining in the game. The Raiders recovered an onside kick and quickly found the end zone on just the second play of the series on a 52-yard touchdown pass from Malin to Cole Maddox to make it a 24-19 game, but Oneonta had an answer once again as a 5-yard touchdown run made it 31-19. 

Malin’s 22-yard run to start out the next series got Good Hope off to another strong start, and he later found Cole Maddox once again for a 32-yard score to cut the deficit to 31-26 with 2:43 remaining in the contest. But the Redskins struck quickly on a 59-yard score to make it 37-26 just 11 seconds later. Walter Perez hit a 17-yard field goal to make it 37-29, but Good Hope couldn’t recover the onside kick and Oneonta kneeled to drain the remaining 26 seconds off the clock.

The Raiders end the season with a 37-29 loss to the Redskins and an 8-3 record.

Malin finished 18-for-29 for 254 yards, two touchdowns and an interception, plus 109 more on the ground and a pair of scores. Cole Maddox finished with seven receptions for 140 yards and two scores, while Drew Maddox added 82 yards on seven receptions.

Eleven players played their final game for Good Hope, but there’ll be some amazing young talent coming back for coach Alan Scott and the rest of his coaching staff in 2020.

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