PINSON VALLEY -- #1 Clay-Chalkville went on the road and won a tough 14-12 region game at Willie Adams Stadium Friday night. Both defenses played pretty well for most of the game. Both teams scored two touchdowns, but the Cougars were the only team with a 2-point conversion, and that was the difference in the game. Both offenses struggled for most of the night.
"I thought our defense came out ready to play," said Cougars DE Devin Finley. "I think our defense is best in the state. I give credit to our coaches that prepare us Monday through Thursday. We plan to be the best defense in the state. I'm used to playing in this kind of atmosphere. Big games, we have been here before. This is one of the best rivalries in the state, but we prepared for this moment."
Both teams created turnovers in the first half, and there was not much scoring until late in the second quarter. With 3:10 left in half, Kamari McClellan went deep to Mario Craver for a 48-yard touchdown pass play. Running back Rodreckus Johnson scored on the two-point conversion, and the Cougars led 8-0 late in the first half.
Pinson Valley (1-2, 1-1) responded before the half, and with only :17 seconds left in the second quarter, quarterback Keywone Posey hit TJ Metcalf on a 9-yard touchdown pass in the right side of the end zone for a Pinson Valley score. The two-point conversion failed, and Clay-Chalkville to the 8-6 lead into halftime.
Early in the second half, Pinson Valley fumbled, and the Cougars defense created the opportunity for the offense. With 9:40 left in the third quarter, Johnson ripped off a big 58-yard touchdown run. The two-point conversion failed, but Clay-Chalkville had a 14-6 lead, but just like the first half, the Pinson Valley offense responded again. With 5:30 left in the third quarter, Posey pulled the ball from his running back, raced around the right end, and scored on a 28-yard touchdown run. The critical two-point conversion failed, and the Cougars held on to a 14-12 lead.
Clay-Chalkville (4-0, 2-0) had great scoring opportunities in the fourth quarter but could not punch it in with scores. The Cougars don't have a field goal kicker, costing Clay-Chalkville some short field goal opportunities. "I'm delighted that we came out with a win, but not the way we want to play," said Cougars head coach Drew Gilmore. "Enjoy the night and get back to work in the morning. Proud of our guys when things did go our way, we still came away with a win. Anytime we play Pinson, we know we were in for a battle. We have to play better and clean up a lot of our mistakes. We didn't play well at all on the offensive side. Our defense came up big tonight."
Next, Clay-Chalkville will face Center Point, while Pinson Valley will travel to Oxford.