The weather was cold but both teams seemed to adjust well in Panama City’s Emerald Bowl last Wednesday night.
Bay High scored late to take a 35-29 win over West Gadsden as both squads wound up their football seasons at Tommy Oliver Stadium.
The catalyst for Bay was Raekwon Webb who racked up 295 ground yards on 49 carries including 14 straight on an 84-yard drive that culminated with Xavier Longerbeam’s two-yard winning touchdown with just 14 seconds left in the game.
West Gadsden ran just 38 plays to 78 for the Tornados in the game but stayed in the hunt until the end by taking advantage of Bay mistakes that included six lost fumbles and two pass interceptions.
The first pass interception was returned 97 yards by Marquis Brown and put West Gadsden up 6-0 midway through the first quarter. A fumble recovery by Ronald Pinkney, just a few plays later, set up another Panther score and a 13-0 lead when Brown caught a 19- yard pass from Quanterrious Knight.
Before the quarter was over the Tornados tied the score on a 1-yard quarterback sneak by Longerbeam and a 4-yard run by Travion Webb.
West Gadsden got the lead back and carried a 29-12 margin into the half behind a 30-yard scoring pass to Octavious Evans from Knight, a 22-yard Israel Grande field goal, and a 42-yard touchdown toss from Knight to Brown.
Bay managed to tie the game on a Webb 4-yard run and a Webb 2-point conversion run in the third quarter before eating up the fourth quarter behind Webb’s running that kept the Panther offense off the field.
Bay got their record to 6-5 with the win and left West Gadsden with a 6-5 mark.
“I felt we played hard in the game,” West Gadsden coach Joe Striplin said. “We wished the result could have been different but feel it is something that can help us grow and look forward to next year.”