The Wellborn side went crazy.
It happened twice for the Panthers on Friday night in their 12-6 win over Weaver.
Screws’ two last-minute catches, one to end the half, and the other to effectively end the game, tell the story.
One was a touchdown pass from Wellborn quarterback Judd Smith to tie the game before halftime, and the other an interception to stop Weaver from scoring late in the fourth.
“They had all the momentum and we knew we couldn’t let them go into halftime with the momentum,” said Screws. “Judd did a great job stepping up. He threw it out there in front of me and I was just able to get it and fall into the end zone.”
That score tied up the game at 6-6 with no time left on the clock before halftime.
Screws’ other catch came during Weaver’s own two-minute drill late in the fourth quarter.
Weaver quarterback Brennan Ledbetter had completed five straight passes, but his next ball was thrown over the middle, and Screws swooped in and snagged it out of the air.
“That’s Wellborn football,” said Wellborn coach Jeff Smith. “I can name you ten games out here that’s been won on defense and another one was won tonight on it.”
Wellborn’s defense stood strong when tested early too, coming up with two fourth down stops in the red zone and one three-and-out to start the game.
“Ever since coach Smith came here,” said Screws, “he’s talked about Wellborn football and how you win on defense and how it used to be — making fourth down stops on the goal line, and making fourth down stops to win the game — and this was the first time we got to experience it first hand. We’ve talked about it all summer running hills. We’d go and have to come back and act like it was a penalty and dig deep and just find that inner strength to make the stops that we needed.”
Wellborn’s final score came right after halftime, after a long drive engineered by Smith was capped with a 12-yard touchdown run by Panther fullback Bobby White.
“We were a little beat up coming into the game and they came out there and really took it to us in the first half and really out hit us,” Said Jeff Smith. “I’m just proud of our kids, how they came in the last couple of minutes of the first half and then coming into the third and fourth quarter, they just really stepped up and I’m really proud of them.”
Getting first downs between the 20s wasn’t a problem for the Bearcats; it was Wellborn’s defense in the red zone that gave them fits all night.
“I thought we moved the ball very well, especially in the first half,” said Weaver coach Daryl Hamby. “We only came away with six points. That is unacceptable. We have to do a better job of execution.”
And Hamby had a one-word playbook for improving Weaver’s execution in practice this week: “Pain,” he said.