Rabbs fall to Bears in pre-district action
Atlanta traveled to Gladewater last Friday evening for game two of the young season.
Gladewater proved too much to handle as the Rabbs dropped the game, 37-21.
Aside from battling the Bears those in attendance were met with an hour lightning delay and a rain-soaked first half.
Atlanta won the toss and accepted the ball to begin the game.
With the ball resting at the 30, Atlanta quarterback Andy Samples promptly handed the ball off to running back Jawan King who picked up five yards.
King took the next handoff for a first down but the dreaded yellow handkerchief launched from the hand of the official negated the play as the Rabbits were called for holding.
From the 25 Samples tossed an incomplete pass and on third down Gladewater broke up a Samples’ pass play which forced the Rabbs to punt with 11:23 left in the first quarter.
The Bears began their first drive from its own 37-yard line.
It only took Gladewater three plays to cross the goal line as they converted two big run plays on pitches.
The final play of the drive was a 40-yard touchdown on a pitch which put the Bears up, 6-0, with 10:20 left in the first frame.
The PAT was blocked and the score remained the same.
Atlanta’s next drive began at the Rabbit 21-yard line.
Samples’ had his attempted pass blocked on first down before taking the pigskin on a QB draw and picking up 13 yards to the 34.
King picked up three yards on the next play followed by a short 5-yard gain by Samples.
Samples gained another first down with his legs as he picked up the yards needed on third down.
Working from the 47-yard line Samples was met by the Bears’ defense for a 1-yard gain, but a sack put the Rabbs back at the 43 on the next play.
Samples found Carson Rich wide open on third down for a nice gain down to Gladewater’s 32-yard line, but another holding penalty against the Rabbs negated that play as well.
A couple of plays later the Rabbs had to punt the ball away with 6:37 left in the opening quarter.
The Bears began the next drive at its own 31-yard line.
After a 13-yard run for a first down on the inaugural play of the new drive, Gladewater was stymied by the Rabbit defense in three plays including two nice coverage plays by J.J. Fields.
This put the Bears in punt formation with 5:12 left in the quarter.
Atlanta’s next drive started at the 32.
King gained four yards on a jet sweep followed by an 8-yard gallop by Samples.
After two sacks for losses Samples hit Farron Hall for a first down, but a Gladewater defender ran into Hall causing an incomplete pass.
The punt with just a little over three minutes left on the clock rolled out at midfield.
After two big runs the Bears’ QB connected with his receiver from the 31 for a nice gain, but a flag against Gladewater actually moved them forward to the 24 because of a spot foul.
Four plays later the Bears scored from the 1-yard line with 52 seconds left on the clock, The PAT was good and the lead was shifted to, 13-0.
Atlanta began its next drive from the 30 and on the first play Caleb Hamilton took the ball on the handoff for a nice gain, but another holding call against the Rabbs canceled the play out.
On first-and-17 from the 23-yard line King gained 15 yards to the 38 which set up a short second down play.
The quarter ended with a fumbled snap picked up by Samples and run forward.
After just a gain of 1-yard to end the first quarter the second stanza started with a third down play from the 39.
King took the pitch for six yards and a Rabbit first down on the next play.
After an incomplete pass on the next play King bolted 11 yards for a first down to the Bears’ 44-yard line.
King picked up another eight yards on the play after followed by two short, hard runs courtesy of Dra Nelson.
Two plays later Samples pump faked and hit Jacorian Fields on the left side of the field for a 35-yard touchdown with 9:16 left in the second quarter.
Fernando Campos hit the PAT and the Rabbs were down just, 13-7.
The Bears began its next drive at the 18.
Gladewater ate up a lot of clock time on the drive as the Bears executed several good runs, a couple of screen passes and the dreaded pitch play Atlanta had trouble defending.
The 13-play, 82-yard drive ended with a 15-yard score on the pitch with 3:07 left in the first half.
The PAT was good and the Bears were up, 20-7.
Atlanta started its next drive from the 38-yard line after a nice run by Nelson with hopes of scoring since Gladewater would receive the kickoff in the third chapter of the game.
The drive looked promising after nice runs by King and Samples, but an interception at the 1:22 mark ended the hopes of scoring again before the half ended.
Gladewater took over at at midfield.
After a 20-yard gain put the Bears at the 30, a flag on Atlanta during the play positioned Gladewater to the Rabbit 20.
A short run and a penalty dropped the Bears back to the Rabbit 29.
After a quick timeout with 23 seconds on the clock Gladewater was flagged, and the ball was moved to the 34.
On second-and-long the Bears’ QB had his pass batted away by Josh Edwards.
With 15 seconds and facing third-and-long Gladewater had another incomplete pass which brought up fourth down.
On the fourth down play Gladewater’s QB wriggled out of trouble and hit his receiver for a big first down. A flag was thrown against Atlanta with no time left on the clock, and the Bears used the free play to hit a 26-yard field goal.
At the half the Bears were up, 23-7.
Gladewater opened the second half with the ball on the 21-yard line.
After a 14-yard run and two runs of 11 yards total the Bears’ running back gained 22 yards on a play into Rabbit territory, but a holding call negated the huge gain.
On the next play the Bears gained 26 yards on a pass play which put them at the Rabbit 38.
A few plays later Gladewater faced fourth down but reached the first down marker after the pass attempt went through the Atlanta defender’s arms and right into the Bears’ receiver’s hands.
Three plays later and the Bears were back in the endzone with 5:38 left in the quarter.
The successful PAT made the score, 30-7.
Atlanta’s first drive of the second half began at the 47 after another nice runback by Hamilton on the kickoff.
King left the game with an injury suffered on the second play of the drive and did not return, but on the third play Samples hit Wood for a 21-yard gain into Gladewater territory.
Three plays later and the Rabbs punted the ball away with 2:33 left in the third quarter.
Gladewater took over at the 14 with 2:23 left on the clock.
The Bears took the ball from the 14 to the 36 in four plays and the quarter ended with Gladewater facing second down from the 36-yard line.
The Bears only needed two yards for a first down to open the final frame, and the running back gained seven yards.
On the next play the Bears went back to the pitch play which netted them a 14-yard gain into Rabbit territory.
Working from the 43, Gladewater reached the 30 on a 13-yard outburst which was followed by another pitch which netted them 16 yards down to the Rabbit 14.
Three plays later and Gladewater was back in the endzone.
After the PAT the score was boosted to, 37-7, with 9:40 left in the game.
Nelson took the kickoff back to the 40-yard line which put the Rabbs in good field position.
From the 40 Atlanta’s first two plays resulted in negative yards, but on third down Hamilton bolted for 16 yards and gained a first down for the Rabbits.
After a couple of runs by Nelson, Samples connected with #21 on a 43-yard touchdown pass with 6:50 left in the contest.
Campos hit the PAT and the score was, 37-14.
The Bears had the ball at the 17-yard line after the kickoff, and looked to run the clock out or as much off as they could.
In just two plays, which included a 24-yard gain on the unstoppable pitch play, and the Bears were at the 45.
A flag on the next snap altered the rest of the plays as Gladewater fumbled on fourth down a few plays later. The loose ball was recovered by Atlanta at the 2:54 mark from the 43, but the referees decided that Gladewater’s error which brought out the yellow handkerchief was a dead ball foul.
So the Bears were able to keep the ball and try again at a first down from the 45, but Gladewater decided to punt the ball anyways with just under 2:50 left in the game.
Atlanta began its next drive at the 12 with a 5-yard run by Nelson followed by a 71-yard gallop by Hamilton down to Gladewater’s nine.
Three plays later Hamilton was near a first down when a Gladewater defender got chippy and a flag was thrown for unsportsmanlike conduct.
Samples slipped across the goal line three plays later from the 2-yard line with 13 seconds left on the clock.
The PAT was good and the score was changed to, 37-21, and that would be the final.
The Rabbits welcome the defending state champion Pleasant Grove Hawks to town this Friday, Sept. 14, with kickoff set for 7:30 p.m.
Before the game the Atlanta Hall of Fame inductees will be given plaques honoring the first five into the hallowed hall. Be sure to be present to watch history in the making.