By Scott Larson
The Branham Football team defeated the Gunderson Grizzlies on their home turf, Friday September 30. A strong fourth quarter by the Bruins led them to their first win of the season. The final score of 24-14 was particularly irksome for Gunderson, because this was their Homecoming game.
Offensively, Tommy McMahon had a solid game, leading the Bruins’ offense down the field numerous times. The Defense, led by Senior Darnell Sankey, was able to hold the Grizzlies to only two touchdowns.
Branham went down 7-0 in the second quarter, but a 90-yard kick return for a touchdown by junior Darren Brown and a point-after touchdown (PAT) by senior Scott Larson tied up the game. The game remained tied until the third quarter when Gunderson regained the lead.
Branham responded to the adversity of going down once more with a strong fourth quarter. Senior quarterback Tommy McMahon led the team down the field for a touchdown on a quarterback keeper, and a PAT by Scott Larson tied the game. A stringy Branham defense led by Senior Darnell Sankey, who had 19 tackles throughout the game, stopped the Grizzly defense once more, leading to a Branham field goal by Scott Larson to take the lead. This ended up being the field goal for the game.
A strong defensive hold by the “Bermuda Triangle,” composed of seniors Darnell Sankey and Michael Louludakis and junior Travis Mabry, stopped the Grizzles on a pivotal fourth and one. This led to a 45-yard touchdown by Trevor Carter, putting the game out of reach with less than two minutes remaining.
Germani Rogers and Trevor Carter led the team in rushing yards. Trevor had a long of 45 yards and had a total of 63 yards on 5 carries. Germani had a long of 22 yards, with 13 carries and 56 yards. Darren Brown had 3 kick returns for 159 yards and 1 touchdown with a long of 95 yards. Touchdowns by Darren Brown, Tommy McMahon and Trevor Carters, along with field goals by Scott Larson, led the team to a 24-14 victory over Gunderson. Darnell Sankey led the team with 19 tackles, followed by Trevor Carter with 6 tackles. Abey Bezabah had the Bruin’s first interception of the season.
Tommy was 3 for 7, passing for 30 yards. The team had 37 carries for 145 yards and 2 touchdowns in their run game. Special teams, had a total of 6 returns for 172 yards. The defense was outstanding only giving up 14 points while forcing 2 fumbles, 1 recovered by Scott Larson, and an interception by Abey Bezabah. Senior Darnell Sankey was also a key defensive player with 19 tackles.
The Bruins are 1-3 overall and 1-0 in the B-League. They play 1-0 Lincoln on October 7 at Branham.