AUBURN, Alabama -- Cam Coleman scored four touchdowns as the Central-Phenix City Red Devils defeated Auburn 41-20 to win the Class 7A, Region 2 title at Duck Samford Stadium on Friday night. The Andrew Alford to Coleman connection was huge all night as the Red Devils got the big road victory in region play.
Central-Phenix City (8-0, 7-0) passing game made the big plays all night when they needed them and has been solid for pretty much of the season. "We showed a lot of perseverance in this game," said Red Devils head coach Patrick Nix. "Things didn't go our way a lot of the times, but the guys kept fighting and made a lot of big plays. We played a very good football team."
One of those big plays happened first in the game when Alford connected to Coleman on a 64-yard touchdown pass play, and the Red Devils led 7-0 with 9:56 left in the first quarter. Central came right back to score again, and with 4:55 left in the first quarter, Ethan Paul kicked a 35-yard field goal, and the Red Devils led 10-0.
With 58 seconds left in the first quarter, Paul kicked a 24-yard field goal, and Central took a 13-0 lead and really dominated the first quarter, but Auburn turned the momentum in the second quarter. With 9:05 left in the second quarter, Towns McGough kicked a 50-yard field goal, and Auburn cut the Central lead to 13-3. Central responded, and with 4:55 left in the second quarter, Alford threw a 50/50 ball in the end zone, Coleman came down with the one-yard touchdown pass, and the Red Devils led 20-3 late in the second quarter.
The game really changed on the next possession for Central. With Auburn down on the Red Devils 15-yard line and looking to cut the lead down to 10 points, Auburn fumbled, and Ljay Williams scooped up the ball and raced 85 yards for a Red Devils touchdown. What a big swing for Central, and with 3:15 left in the half, the Red Devils led 27-3. With only 28 seconds until halftime, Auburn responded with an Omar Mabson 2-yard touchdown run, and the Tigers trailed 27-10 at halftime.
In the second half, Auburn scored first when McGough kicked a 28-yard field goal and just missed a touchdown pass in the end zone and had to settle for the field goal. With 7:43 left in the third quarter, Auburn still trailed 27-13. With 11:10 left in the fourth quarter, Alford connected with Coleman on a big 62-yard touchdown pass, and the Red Devils led 34-13 early in the fourth quarter.
With 7:34 left in the fourth quarter, the Tigers scored on a Henry Allen 2-yard touchdown run to cut the Red Devils lead to 34-20. With 5:41 left in the game, Alford found Coleman in the end zone for a 26-yard touchdown pass play and pretty much secured the Red Devils victory.
For the game, Alford completed 14-of-24 passing for 341 yards and four touchdowns. "We is such a competitor," added Nix. "He does a great job of competing; got hit tonight, kept playing. Did a great job of standing in the pocket and making throws. Did a great job of making big plays and taking care of the football. Overall did a very good job."
Coleman had a huge game with nine receptions for 294 yards and four touchdowns. "Cam is always crucial to our offense," said Nix. "They are going to double him, and everyone else will have a night, or he has this night. Just having his presence on the field is huge. Just how he affects the game."
Next for both teams, Central has an open date, while Auburn will host Prattville.