After losing all four of their games at home on May 19, the Buckeye Varsity went undefeated at ETBU’s Tournament and won the championship trophy. It was anything but easy, but the young men made it known that they had the Gilmer P.R.I.D.E. in a showing that no one expected in Marshall.
The Bucks started off the day with a 35-14 victory over the Daingerfield JV. In their second game, Gilmer got past a very good San Augustine team 44-40. They won their pool and moved into the playoffs against Grace, avenging a 37-28 loss in Gilmer with an amazing 41-40 victory.
In the semi-finals they beat San Augustine once again, this time by the score of 34-32. A big interception by Patrick Finch turned out to be the determining factor in the Buckeye victory.
As if Gilmer fans in attendance hadn’t had enough nail-biting finishes throughout the day, the Championship game wasn’t decided until the very last play of the game as time expired. Jaidon Parrish hit Patrick Finch, giving the Buckeyes a 24-22 victory over Lake Hamilton (Arkansas) and earning the team the Championship trophy. Justus Cheatham had a key interception in the game. Gilmer had trailed the entire contest before winning on the final play.
The Bucks continued to rotate quarterbacks on every possession, just as they did last week, in an attempt to help make the determination as to who the starting quarterback will be this season. Obviously, the quarterbacks performed well throughout the day.
The dramatic turnaround has the team full of confidence as they prepare for their next tournament, this Friday, June 1 when they travel to Bullard. This is a Division II qualifying tournament for the state championships July 19-21 at Texas A&M.
The Buckeyes are scheduled to play their first game in Bullard at 9 a.m. against Chapel Hill, which will be one of the teams to beat along with the Buckeyes in District 16-3A in the fall. The Bulldogs won state in Class 3A Division I in 2011.
Then at 10 a.m. they play White Oak and at 11 a.m. Shelbyville.
Host team Bullard will also be in District 16-3A after having gone three rounds deep in the playoffs in 2011.
Unfortunately the Gilmer 2nd team, which was composed of basically the same young men that won the JV Division of the Gilmer Tournament a week earlier, didn’t fare as well in Marshall.
After being tied at the end of regulation play, the 2nd team lost to Lake Hamilton, 32-26 in overtime. They bounced back with a 52-13 throttling of Ore City in game two, but fell 35-21 to Grace to end their day at 1-2.
If you have the opportunity, be sure to make the drive to Bullard on Friday and support these young men as they sharpen their skills for this fall. The regular season will be here before you know it, and this group needs your support now to help them get ready for the 2012 season.