By Mike Hastings
Ensworth visited McCallie this week to take on the Chattanooga powerhouse in a key conference matchup Friday . The Tigers were held scoreless in the second half and fell 28-20.
The first half was full of explosive plays on offense from both sides.
Ensworth’s Nicky Clifton got the Tigers off with a 7-yard touchdown run to cap off a 9-play 85-yard drive.
On the first play of McCallie’s possession, Xavier Brooks broke free and raced 76 yards to the end zone to tie the game at 7-7.
Ensworth’s Keyshawn Lawrence came right back for the Tigers and took the hand off and broke free himself, this one for 74 yards and a Tigers touchdown and a 14-7 lead.
But Brooks came right back and on the sixth play of the McCallie drive, broke free from 35 yards out and tied the game at 14-14.
On Ensworth’s next series, it was Wesley Walker’s turn to get into the act. After a couple short gains, Walker got the ball and raced 59 yards to give the Tigers the lead again.
Lucas Rodriquez’s kick was blocked, making it 20-14.
But McCallie’s offense continued to roll and on their next possession drove 64 yards on just four plays, capped off by Rico Dozier’s 37-yard touchdown reception from quarterback Deangelo Hardy. After convert the PAT, McCallie took the lead for good 21-20 at the half.
In the middle of the third quarter, Brooks ended the scoring with another long run, this time from 35 yards out to give McCallie the final 28-20 winning margin.
McCallie did a good job slowing the Tigers potent running game. Workhorse running back Nicky Clifton was held to 86 yards on 17 carries. Clifton had been averaging close to 200 yards per game coming into the contest.
Keyshawn Lawrence faired better, gaining 97 yards on just five carries, including his long touchdown run.
The Ensworth passing game struggled. Quarterback Cole Kennon completed just two passes in 11 attempts for just 13 yards.
Jaylon King completed two passes in seven attempts, including a 32-yarder to Tyler Baron and a 22-yarder to Walker.
Elijah Brooks led the Ensworth defense with seven solo tackles.
Josh Howard had six solo tackles and 1.5 tackles for a loss, and Henry Bird added five solo tackles.
Ensworth Stalls in Loss to McCallie