Brewer falls at home
FLORETTE – A controversial climax to Friday night’s Brewer vs. Columbia of Huntsville clash left many Patriot coaches, players and fans angry with the officiating crew over what they perceived as no-calls on obvious rules infractions.
Columbia emerged the winner in the contest, 39-27, but its final score came on a disputed play with 42 seconds left in the game. QB Corey Collier was standing behind his center as the play clock was winding down to zero. The Patriot defense was not in position expecting a delay of game penalty. Instead, Collier took the snap and ran 28 yards to the end zone untouched. The play was allowed over the protest of Brewer’s coaching staff and the score stood at 39-27 following Arriaga-Puente’s extra point kick.
On two previous no-calls for interference on long pass plays, Brewer head coach Daniel Gullion made vocal protests to the head official to no avail.
“The officiating hurt us tonight,” said Gullion. “We didn’t get calls on the disputed pass plays and their last touchdown shouldn’t have been allowed. That’s ridiculous.”
“But regardless of the circumstances, this team doesn’t stop fighting,” he added. “That’s to their credit.”
Brewer gave up a safety on the first possession of the game when the ball rolled out of the end zone after Hunter Eddy was unable to field a high snap from center. The 2-0 lead came with 10:12 left in the first quarter.
Columbia upped its lead to 5-0 on a 29-yard field goal by Jordan Arriaga-Puente with 8:10 left in the first period. It capped a 48-yard drive on nine plays.
The visiting Eagles increased their lead to 12-0 on a 17-yard pass from Collier to Robert Flowers and Arriaga-Puente’s extra point conversion with 3:12 left in the second quarter.
The score capped a 28-yard drive on seven plays and followed a pass interception.
Brewer answered with a touchdown pass from Matt Mann to T.J. Graham that covered 13 yards. Eddy kicked the extra point to make the score 12-7 with nine seconds left in the first half.
The Patriots grabbed a 14-12 lead on the strength of an 80-yard touchdown pass from Mann to Graham and an extra point conversion by Eddy with 6:31 left in the third quarter.
The Eagles regained the lead with 2:26 left in the same period when they scored on a 74-yard run by Cornelius Sublett. Ariaga-Puente’s kick for the extra point was no good leaving the score at 18-14.
The Patriots had an opportunity to go ahead again on their next possession but an interception by Columbia’s Shaun Lewis killed a drive at his own 10-yard line. He ran the ball back 90 yards for a touchdown with 6:06 left in the game.
His touchdown was followed by a two-point conversion pass from Collier to Flowers to make the score 26-14.
Graham returned the ensuing kickoff 80 yards to cut the Eagles’ lead to 26-20. Eddy’s kick for the extra point was no good.
The Eagles answered by marching 50 yards on four plays and scoring on a 39-yard run by Sublett with 3:13 left in the game. A pass for a two-point conversion was no good and the score remained at 32-20.
The Patriots responded by marching 70 yards on four plays and scoring on a 13-yard pass from Mann to Casey Vest with 2:08 left in the game. Eddy booted the extra point to make the score 32-27.
The Eagles scored again on a 28-yard run by Collier with 42 seconds left. The extra point was good making the score 39-27.
Graham paced Brewer’s offense with eight pass receptions for 140 yards and two touchdowns and ran back a Columbia punt 75 yards for another score.