MURPHY, N.C.- It was a mean and muggy night full of humidity and emotions. A historic rivalry was gaining momentum, inevitably leading to an explosion under the Friday Night Lights of Bob Hendrix Stadium. Murphy wins the coin toss, and defers to the second half.
Robbinsville received the kick off first, they bullied their way down the field , successfully converting on two 4th down conversions. The last conversion attempt ending up in a pitch right halfback pass to a wide open receiver, for a Robbinsville touchdown! PAT attempt was missed, put 6 on the board for the Black Knights.
Bulldogs responded quickly, Kadrian “The Blonde Bombshell” McRae takes the ball on the kickoff return for an impressive, and exhilarating, 95-yard Bulldog’s touchdown! “Miss automatic” Katelyn Jones hits the point-after try to put the Bulldogs up 7 to 6.
Robbinsville marches down the field, but the Bulldog defense was not having it tonight, they stop the Black Knights inside the 10, Black Knights opt to kick the field goal, and that puts our score, 9-7 Black Knights.
Referees didn’t like the way the weather was looking, lightning in the background brought this game to a stand still, game was put on pause for about 30 minutes, referees decide to come back out and get this game restarted.
Not long after game play resumed, Black Knights with the ball driving, huge knock-out blow delivered by number 58 Collin “the Nightmare” Cruise, resulting in a sack and a forced-fumble, recovered by the Bulldogs!
“Captain Curry” Joey Curry throws a lightning strike of a pass down the field to number 4 Deandre “You Can Hate Me Now” Jackson for a 20-yard completion. Bulldogs within striking distance, Curry under center, takes the ball, quick outside pass, fires left finding number 12 Hagan “Ankle Breakin’ is my side job” Newton, makes one player miss, jukes left, hits the right trigger, and turbo boosts it into the end zone for a 28-yard Bulldog’s touchdown! Extra point is good by Jones 14-9 Murphy Bulldogs.
Black Knights driving down the field inside the Bulldog’s Red Zone, yet again the Bulldogs mighty defense comes up big with the stop to hold Robbinsville to another field goal attempt, it’s good. Dogs still up 14-12.
Bulldogs handoff right side to McRae, speeding down the right side of the field, breaks the tackle, pushed out of bounds at the Black Knight’s 15-yard line. KJ “AKJ-47” Allen muscles his way in from six yards out running over Black Knights, he has the X-caliber! Hold the phone, penalty on the play! First and goal from the 3-yard line. Curry tries to run it in with a QB sneak, big pile up, we’re going to go ahead and call that a 2-yard gain, 2nd and goal from the 1. Bulldogs call time out to talk it over. 2nd and goal from the 1 Micah “The Mighty” Nelson powers it in over center, big pile up, referees clear out the bodies, they signal touchdown! Penalty on the Black Knights will be enforced on a kickoff.
Devonte “Show Me The Murray” Murray kicks the ball down the field, Black Knights return stopped inside the 20. Second play of the Black Knight’s drive, interception Chase “The Snake” Roberts, for a Bulldogs first down!
With the clock running down before half-time Curry throws one up for grabs in the back right hand corner of the end zone, intercepted by the Black Knights as the buzzer sounds, and the ticker strikes zero, bringing us to halftime. 21-12 Bulldogs on top.
Second half of action starts off with a huge kickoff return by McRae 60-plus yards down the field. Black Knights penalty on the play puts the Bulldogs down to about the Robbinsville 24-yard line. First and Ten Bulldogs! Hand off left side, another penalty on the play, this time it’s on the Bulldogs. Holding is the call, puts the Bulldogs back at about the 34-yard line.
Bulldogs under pressure, it’s 3rd and 19 to go, ball on the 34-yard line. McRae with another tough as nails power rumble, getting back all 10 of those penalty yards, and picking up another 6 more. 4th down and 3-yards to go, Bulldogs are going for it, Curry takes the pigskin bootleg right, hits the receiver H.Newton for the Bulldog’s first down!
Bulldogs again threatening inside the Black Knight’s Red Zone. They are leaning on number 34 heavy tonight, another carry for seven yards, ball on the 6-yard line. 3rd down and 3 to go, Bulldogs marching. Hand off to Murray, tough one-yard gain on the play, 4th and 2 to go on the 5-yard line. Bulldogs choose to go for it again on 4th down. Bulldogs muscle up “It’s not marble, It’s Slade” McTaggart gets the ball down to the 1-yard line, first and goal Bulldogs! McTaggart gets the ball again, powers his way through the hole, touchdown Murphy! McTaggart comes up limping after the score. Jones lines up for the extra point, slams it through the uprights, Murphy Bulldogs up 28-12 with 6 minutes and 45 seconds to go in the 3rd quarter here at Bob Hendrix Stadium.
After a Robbinsville 3 and out, Curry launches a 30-yard strike down the field inside the 5-yardline. Robbinsville stops the receiver on the 2-yard line. McRae takes the ball on the handoff, sprints right, and is stripped by the Black Knight’s ball hawking defense. Robbinsville recovers, 1st and 10 ball on their own 8-yard line.
At the end of the third quarter ball is on the 17-yard line. Black Knight’s still have possession of the ball, 4th and 1. Robbinsville is going to go for it on 4th and 1 inside their own Red Zone, they are successful, and get the first down! They are marching down the field, clock is ticking, coming up on just over 9 minutes left in the game.
Crossing the 50-yard line, ball on the 49, now is the time just under 9 minutes left in the 4th quarter, Robbinsville Black Knights need to strike quickly to get back into this one. Got another 4th down and 9 to go, ball is on the 48-yard line, they decide to punt the ball away, drops inside the 20, and the Black Knights get the friendly bounce, football wobbles down to the Bulldog’s 1-yard line.
Bulldogs take over on their own 1-yard line. Murphy decides to put it in the hands of their running backs, good idea, powering out of their own Red Zone for a Bulldogs first down. Murray takes the ball out for a 9-yard gain on the play, Bulldogs killing the clock, 5:29 left in the fourth quarter of play, Bulldogs with the ball and a comfortable lead. Bulldogs up 28-12. Allen receives the handoff and charges through for a Bulldogs first down on 2nd and short. On first down Bulldogs go play-action, Curry hits his receiver for another first down and the Bulldogs continue to kill the clock. Clock running down with just over two minutes left in this game. You can pretty much call it, this game is over, barring any miracles from the heavens.
Clock still running 3rd and 2, ball on the 48-yard line, penalty on the Play, false start on the Bulldogs. Robbinsville defense not giving up on 3rd and 7 stopping Murphy at the line of scrimmage. Black Knights call timeout. Murphy punts the ball down the field, Robbinsville takes over at their own 21-yard line. Another penalty on the play, unsportsmanlike conduct on Murphy, moves the ball up 15-yards to the 36-yard line.
49 seconds to go in this game, first and ten Black Knights. Robbinsville quarterback under pressure again, manages to escape the sack, but throws incomplete. 2nd and 10, time to go home folks, 43 seconds left. Pass incomplete, yet another penalty, this time it’s pass interference on the Bulldogs. Another penalty giving the Black Knights a free first down.
37 seconds left, and I’m wondering to myself, will this game ever end? Black Knights quarterback under pressure all night, scrambles right, fires it down the field, intercepted by the Bulldogs! Somebody call his Grandma, another big play by “The Blonde Bombshell” Kadrian McRae. Bulldogs take over on the 33-yard line. Curry takes a knee, time expires, and this game is finally over. Your final score, Bulldogs 28, Black Knights 12.
Tune in next week as the Murphy Bulldogs travel to Andrews, to take on the Wildcats, it’s going to be a barn burner!
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