Anderson County Ends Red Bank's Season, 29-13

Mavericks Score 29 Unanswered Points In Second Half

  • Friday, November 25, 2022
  • John Hunt

A magical football season came to a premature end at the Red Bank Community Stadium/ Tom Weathers Field Friday night.

The Red Bank Lions had a great run and won three straight playoff games in impressive fashion, but it wasn’t meant to be on Friday night as the unbeaten Anderson County Mavericks remained unbeaten after 14 games with a come-from-behind 29-13 victory.

It was really a game of two halves, but the Mavericks had better results in the second half then the Lions did in the first.

It was a great season for the Lions and first-year head coach Ted Gatewood, who is a Red Bank graduate and whose blood runs Red and Blue.  He really didn’t know what to say afterward as you could tell his heart was broken for his team after coming up a game short of the championship at Finley Stadium next weekend.

“We laid it on the line for 14 straight weeks, but it always goes back to turnovers.  We had a couple of big ones in the second half and Anderson County flipped the game with them and regained the momentum,” Gatewood said in the quiet of his office after the emotional game ended.

“We seemed to get better with each passing week, but our defense got put in a bind with those turnovers tonight.  We continued to climb that ladder all season and got to the 14th rung, but couldn’t quite reach the top.  Unless you win it all, you will lose your last game, but I couldn’t be any more proud of these young men.

“They gave us all they had for the entire season and I’m sorry we came up short, but they are better young men and Red Bank is a better school as a result of what they did this fall,” the likeable coach added with a soft tone.

Anderson County coach Davey Gillum has seen his team fall behind before, but they have always rebounded to win and they did so again on Friday.

“I’m definitely not pleased with the way things started for us as we did so many things that are uncharacteristic of us like turnovers, dropped passes and missed assignments, but we didn’t turn on each other and found a way to win in the second half,” Gillum told his team and a host of Maverick followers after the game.

“We needed a game like this.  We came off a big win over Greeneville last week and just didn’t play well in the first half.  But this is the second time in 26 years we’ve advanced to the semifinals and next week will be our first time to the finals, but we found a way to overcome adversity again and I’m so proud of these guys,” he added.

Anderson County drove the ball up and down the field in the first half and had 200 yards total offense in that 24-minute span, but couldn’t put the ball in the end zone.

They took the opening kickoff and moved from their own 19 to the Red Bank 3 in 13 plays, but quarterback Walker Martinez’ pass on fourth down was dropped in the end zone.

Red Bank gained one yard rushing on the first two plays before Eric Hill hooked up with Daunte Morris on a screen pass to the left side that turned into a 96-yard touchdown with 5:21 left in the opening quarter.  Malachi Stephenson booted the extra point and the Lions had the early lead.

An interception by Kobe Smith on the second play of the second quarter put the Lions in business again at the Anderson County 45.

A 20-yard pass play from Hill to Tyler Wright and a 15-yard face mask penalty on the next play put the Lions in the Red Zone right before A.D. Crutcher zipped 15 yards on second-and-12 for Red Bank’s second TD.

Another Anderson County drive ended when Jordan Shaw recovered a fumble at the 24 and the half came to a close with Red Bank ahead 13-0 on the missed opportunities for the Mavericks.

The second half was a totally different matter.

Andrew Meier recovered a Red Bank fumble on the Lion 29 and it took just four plays for the Mavericks to take advantage, Martinez tossing a 16-yard pass to Bryson Vowell on the fourth play to put Anderson County on the board with 8:05 left in the third stanza. 

The kick missed to leave Red Bank ahead by seven, but the momentum had definitely changed sides, the Anderson County crowd was fired up and the Maverick defense ready to climb the highest mountain.

Gavin Noe, who led Anderson County’s running game with 128 yards on 29 carries, proved he could also play defense as he intercepted a Hill pass on Red Bank’s next possession at the Red Bank 17.

Nick Moog scored on a dive from the 2 with 5:04 showing and the score was tied at 13-13 following Christian Nelson’s PAT.

Noe and Moog both added short touchdown runs in the final quarter as the Mavericks slowly pulled away.

The Red Bank offense, which had been explosive at times this season, was limited to just 200 total yards, including 130 yards through the air and just 70 on the ground.

Anderson County’s defense was especially stout in the second half as the Lions were limited to 52 total yards.

While Noe led the Maverick’ runners with his 128 yards, Moog added 74 yards on 17 carries.

And Vowell finished the game as Anderson County’s leading receiver with eight catches for 108 yards after collecting 70 yards on six grabs in the first half.

Crutcher finished his high-school career 52 yards on 14 carries and the one touchdown.

Morris was the leading receiver for the Lions with his 96-yard TD play while Wright had 20 yards on his only catch.

ANDERSON CO.  0  0  13  16  --  29

RED BANK  7  6  0  0  --  13

RB – Daunte Morris 96 pass from Eric Hill (Malachi Stephenson kick), 5:21 left in first;

RB – A.D. Crutcher 15 run (kick failed), 10:07 left in second;

AC – Bryson Vowell 16 pass from Walker Martinez (kick failed), 8:05 left in third;

AC – Nick Moog 2 run (Christian Nelson kick), 5:04 left in third;

AC – Gavin Noe 2 run (Nelson kick), 8:50 left in fourth;

AC – safety when punter was tackled in end zone by Israel Small; 6:42 left in fourth;

AC – Moog 10 run (Nelson kick), 1:51 left in fourth.

ANDERSON CO.                    TEAM STATS                       RED BANK

24                                           FIRST DOWNS                           10

52-180                                   RUSHES-YARDS                     27-70

170                                        PASSING YARDS                      130

18-29-1                             PASSES (COM-ATT-INT)              3-7-2

350                                         TOTAL YARDS                         200

6-59                                     PENALTIES-YARDS                   5-64

4-1                                         FUMBLES-LOST                       2-1

0-0                                         PUNTS-AVERAGE                 3-31.0

INDIVIDUAL STATS:

RUSHING: Gavin Noe 29 for 128 yards and one TD; Nick Moog 17 for 74 yards and two TDs (Anderson Co.); A.D. Crutcher 14 for 52 yards and one TD; Daunte Morris 3 for 11; Eric Hill 9 for 6 yards (Red Bank).

RECEIVING: Bryson Vowell 8 for 104 yards and one TD; Nick Moog 3 for 24; Tate Russell 3 for 20 (Anderson Co.); Daunte Morris 1 for 96 yards and one TD; Tyler Wright 1 for 20 yards (Red Bank).

PASSING: Walker Martinez 18 of 29 for 170 yards with one TD and one interception (Anderson Co.); Eric Hill 3 of 7 for 130 yards with one TD and two interceptions (Red Bank).

RECORDS: Anderson Co. 14-0; Red Bank 11-3.

(Email John Hunt at nomarathonmoose@gmail.com)

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