By Shelly Hess
Courtesy of the Northwest Alabamian
ADDISON — The Phillips Bears’ regular season ended in disappointing fashion Friday night, Oct. 21, with a 45-12 loss to Addison.
The Bears started out great on defense, forcing a punt, but a fumble by the offense was recovered by Addison’s Bradley Willette, turning the ball back to the Dawgs and giving them great field position at the Bears’ 35 yard line. Jed Wilkins was in for Addison on the next play, and Wilkins hit Briley Hayes for two more to make it 8-0.
After a three-and-out by Phillips, the Dawgs set up at the Phillips’ 45 to start their next scoring drive. The Bears pressed Addison, placing them in a fourth and long situation. Hayes kicked a field goal to put the Dawgs up 11-0.
The hits kept coming for Phillips. Addison’s Briley Holt picked off a pass, turning it back over to the home team at the Phillips 26 yard line. Wilkins was in the end zone three plays later. Holt added on two more, and the score was 19-0 with just over a minute left in the first.
After Phillips turned it over on downs deep in Addison territory, the Dawgs made their way down the field, with Brian Berry getting the score. The two-point try failed, but Addison was up 25-0.
Phillips finally got on the board on their next possession. Lathen Burton had a great return all the way to the Addison 32, then Nevin Elkins kept it for five more yards. A short pass to Burton was good for a first down in the red zone. The Bears went for it on fourth down, with Elkins finding Brayden Ricketts for the touchdown. The two-point try failed, and the half ended with Addison up 25-6.
The Bears got the ball to begin the second half, starting from their own 33. Elkins kept it in the air, and Ricketts was good for another touchdown. The two-point try failed again, but Addison’s lead was narrowed to 25-12 with just over 9 minutes left in the third.
Addison quickly answered, with Braden Luker doing the honors on a drive ending with a 10 yard run to the end zone. The two-point try was good, and Addison was up 33-12.
Elkins got picked once more on the Bears’ next possession, this time by Brady Gilbreath. The Dawgs capitalized on the turnover with a touchdown, courtesy of Holt. The two-point try failed, and the score was 39-12 to end the third quarter. Luker scored the final touchdown on the night midway through the fourth quarter to make the final 45-12.
The news isn’t all bad for the Bears, despite the loss. They finished their regular season 6-3 and have made it to the playoffs, which will begin Friday, Nov. 4. The Bears took the fourth spot in Class 1A, Region 8, and will be on the road to take on Valley Head High School in DeKalb County, according to the Alabama High School Football Historical Society ‘s website. This will be the first time the two teams have met on the gridiron, according to the AHSFHS.
Addison will finish their regular season this week on the road at Shoals Christian for their final regional game. The Bulldogs are the Class 1A, Region 8 runner-up, so they will host their first-round game of the playoffs, taking on Appalachian, according to the AHSFHS. The Dawgs have taken on Appalachian three times and have never lost to them.
See complete story in the Journal Record.