Story from The Daily Mountain Eagle by Brian Hale
DORA — The Dora Bulldogs dropped their first Class 5A, Region 5 loss of the season on Friday night, falling to the Ramsey Rams, 55-38 at Horace Roberts Stadium in Dora.
Dora RamsayThe Bulldogs had little problem accumulating offensive yards on the night, outgaining the Rams 478-391, but four costly turnovers led to 21 Ramsey points and proved to be the deciding factor in the contest.
Dora ran for 382 yards on the night, led by Charles Clay’s 226 yards on 20 carries with one touchdown. Ki Babbs finished with 130 yards on 18 carries and found the endzone three times. Clay also led the Bulldog defense with six tackles, two tackles for a loss and a quarterback sack, while A.J. Smoot recorded five tackles, three tackles for a loss, a sack and broke up a pass.
The Bulldogs scored the first points of the night on their second possession of the game, driving 37 yards on five plays. Babbs scored his first touchdown of the night on a 21-yard carry to put Dora ahead, 7-0.
Ramsey answered two series later after recovering a muffed punt on a 17-yard run. Stone Smith broke up the two-point conversion to draw the Rams within a point, 7-6. Dora responded on the next series with a six-play, 65-yard drive as Babbs took the ball in from six yards out — extending the lead to 14-6. The Rams began the second quarter by scoring on a six-yard touchdown pass, but the two-point conversion pass was intercepted by Day Day Freemen, leaving Dora in the lead 14-12.
Jack Spradlin kicked a 24-yard field goal after an eight-play, 58-yard drive to give the Bulldogs a 17-12 edge. A flurry of scoring by both teams closed the final minutes of the first half, with Ramsey scoring on a 20-yard pass and successfully converting two points to take its first lead of the game, 20-17. After receiving the kickoff, Clay broke six tackles en route to a 72-yard touchdown run to give Dora the 24-20 advantage.
The Rams regained command of the game after returning the kickoff for a touchdown for a 27-24 halftime edge. Dora opened the second half with a seven-play, 46-yard drive, with Babbs finding the endzone on a five-yard run to regain the lead, 31-27. The next two series for the Bulldogs ended in miscues. After driving to the Ramsey 10-yard line, Steven Gosha was intercepted in the endzone to stop the drive.
On the ensuing series, the Rams drove to the Dora goaline only to be sto
pped by the Bulldog defense on downs. On the next play, Babbs fumbled the ball, which was recovered by a defender and returned for the score and 34-31 advantage for Ramsey. The fourth quarter saw the Rams score 21 points on drives of 40, 46 and 62 to extend their lead to 55-31.
Dora scored a touchdown in the remaining minute of regulation on a 49-yard pass from Gosha to Freeman for the 55-38 final. Dora (2-2, 1-1) travels to Corner (1-2) next week for another region matchup.
Click here for photos from the game
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Interview with Sara York, Library Media Specialist / Yearbook Adviser
By Emily BartonSara York
Ms. York, please tell us where did you go to school? Dora High School. I later, studied at Bevill State and UAB.
What made you decided to pursue a career in education? I've always enjoyed working with young people.
What do you love/hate about your job? I really love the students; they are such fun to be around. I hate having to drive 45 minutes to get to work.
What is your definition of success? Success is when you enrich someone else's life through your job.
What do you want to be when you grow up? I want to live at the beach and possibly do some type of community service.
Dora rallies past Carver, earns region win 49-35
Story from The Daily Mountain Eagle written by Brian Hale
DORA — The Dora Bulldogs overcame a 20-0 first quarter deficit and outscored the Carver Rams 49-15 in the final three quarters to secure a 49-35 Class 6A, Region 5 victoryDora Carver on Friday at Horace Roberts Stadium in Dora.
Behind strong offensive line play, the Bulldogs rolled up 348 rushing yards on the night while the Dora defense was able to hold Carver to just 84 rushing yards.
Ki Babbs led the rushing attack in a sensational performance, carrying the ball 19 times for 218 yards with four touchdowns. Charles Clay and JaQuan Towns both added touchdowns, with Towns rushing for 68 yards on ten carries and Clay producing 67 yards on 14 rushes.
Defensively, Clay and A.J. Smoot were in the Rams’ backfield through the contest, each recording 6 tackles. Smoot sacked the quarterback four times, had four tackles for a loss, broke up three passes and forced two fumbles, while Clay had a sack and recorded two tackles for a loss.
Dora coach Johnny Wright was proud of his team’s composure in the adversity of being down by three scores and earning their first region win.
“We told out guys all week that they were going to see speed and that Carver was going to try to go vertical and run by us. We just didn’t do anything right defensively from the onset and it cost us. Offensively, we tried to do some new things, but our old gameplan ended up being more successful and we went back to that,” Wright said. “But we did a great job in overcome adversity. You never know how your team will do when your behind like we were, but we didn’t panic — we just did what we do the best. We also had some big plays on defense. It’s a big region win for us — we’ll be seeing the same kind of teams in the region week in and week out.”
Carver scored on all three possessions of the first quarter on drives of 75, 64 and 17 to mount a 20-0 advantage.
From there, the momentum of the game swung to Dora.
Babbs scored on a 28-yard run to end a 69-yard, 8-play drive to cut the lead to 20-7 following a successful point after kick by Jack Spradlin.
On the ensuing kickoff, Dora elected to try an onside kick. Spradlin was able to kick the ball over the surprised Carver players where it was picked up by Tristan Allred.
“We were trying to keep the momentum going — I’d watched film on Carver and saw that they take off early and play back deep. Jack kicked a perfect onside kick — the entire play was executed well and the kids really got after it,” Wright said.
Babbs concluded a three-play, 44 yard drive with a 33-yard run for his second touchdown of the night to pull the Bulldogs within a score, 20-14. On the following series, Carver was held to three and out and went back to punt. Allred broke through the line and blocked the kick, which was scooped up by Day Day Freeman and returned for a touchdown. Spradlin’s extra point kick allowed the Bulldogs to take the lead, 21-20.
The Rams were able to move the ball on the following series until Alex Russell stopped the drive by recovering a fumble. Six plays later, Towns took the ball in from nine-yards out to extend Dora’s lead to 28-20.
A fumble two plays into the Rams’ next possession gave the Bulldogs the ball at Carver’s 23-yard line. Four plays in the drive, Clay found the endzone after a five-yard run to give Dora a 35-20 lead at halftime.
After an exchange of possessions to begin the third quarter, Carver muffed a punt catch on their own five-yard line, which was picked up by Allred. Babbs ran the five yards to the endzone on the next play to give the Bulldogs a 42-20 advantage.
Following a score by Carver late in the third quarter shrink the lead to 42-27, Dora added to the scoreboard with a six-play, 70-yard drive in the fourth quarter. Babbs took the ball in on a 37-yard run for a 49-27 Bulldog lead.
Carver added a final touchdown late in the final minutes of the game to reach the 49-35 final.
Dora (2-1, 1-0) hosts the Ramsay Rams next week in another Region 5 showdown.
Click here for photos from the game
Story by Brian Hale
The Daily Mountain Eagle
DORA — The Dora Bulldogs’ JaQuan Towns was on the top of his game on Friday night.
Dora Mortimer JordanThe junior scored all four of Dora’s touchdowns, while rushing for 108 yards on six carries and caught two passes for 77 yards for the contest. Unfortunately for the Bulldogs, it would not be enough to secure a victory, as Dora (1-1) fell to the Mortimer Jordan Blue Devils, 38-31 at Horace Roberts Stadium in Dora.
After a first half that saw the teams combine for just 200 total yards of offense, both offenses ran rampant in the second half — with Mortimer Jordan outgaining Dora 365-329.
Penalties factored into the problems for Dora as well, with the Bulldogs being flagged 13 times.
Offensively, Ki Babbs contributed with 73 rushing yards on 16 carries, while Charles Clay ran for 68 yards on 15 carries.
A.J. Smoot led the Dora defense with eight tackles, a tackle for a loss and a quarterback sack.
Dora scored on their first possession of the game, capping off a 6-play, 70 yard drive with a 35-yard run by Towns. Jack Spradlin’s successful extra point kick put the Bulldogs ahead, 7-0.
Both offenses were unable to find the endzone until midway through the second quarter, when Mortimer Jordan scored on an 8-play, 40-yard drive. After running the ball in for two points, the Blue Devils took the lead, 8-7.
Dora regained the scoring advantage prior to halftime with a 28-yard field goal for a 10-8 edge. The Bulldogs began the third quarter with a grinding, 15-play drive that ended with Towns scoring from four yards out. Spradlin connected again for the extra point to extend Dora’s lead to 17-8.
The Blue Devils responded with a long drive of their own, scoring on a 15-yard run to draw within a point, 17-16, after a successful two-point run.
The fourth quarter began with the Blue Devils finding the endzone from 38-yards out to pull ahead, 24-17 after a two-point conversion.
Dora quickly answered on the first play of the ensuing drive with a 59-yard touchdown run from Towns to tie the game at 24-24 after Spradlin’s extra point kick.
Mortimer Jordan took control on the following possession on a 70-yard run for a 34-24 lead after a two-point try.
After holding the Bulldogs on downs, the Blue Devils added six points to the score after an 18-yard run. Dora was able to stop the two-point play, while Mortimer Jordan pulled further ahead, 38-24.
Dora, however, wasn’t finished. On the second play of the next series, Steven Gosha hit Towns for a 77-yard touchdown strike that pulled the Bulldogs within a score, 38-31 after Spradlin’s kick.Mortimer Jordan was able to run time off the clock and pin Dora on their own 10-yard line in the final minute of the game — a deficit the Bulldogs were unable to overcome in the 38-31 loss.
Dora will host the Carver-Birmingham Rams in a Region 5 showdown next week.
Story from The Daily Mountain Eagle
by Jonathan Bentley
CORDOVA — Kijuana Babbs' first season opener as the featured running back in Dora’s offense went even better than coach Johnny Wright could have planned.
DoraThe junior running back scored three touchdowns and rushed for 142 yards as the Bulldogs knocked off rival Cordova 35-12 at Hudson-Kirby Stadium Thursday night.
The game, which was slowed by penalties, cramps and more penalties, got sloppy at times. The teams had a total of 33 penalties for 285 yards and combined for eight turnovers — four by each team.
“I didn’t expect us to be as sharp as I would like,” said Wright, who moved to 9-0 against Cordova. “I think we both made mistakes that we would normally make in a jamboree game.”
Dora led 14-6 at the half and broke the game open in the second half with three touchdowns.
All of Babbs’ scores came via the big play. He broke free for a 30-yard score in the second quarter and added 22-yard and 36-yard touchdown runs in the fourth quarter to put the game out of reach. Lineman of the year finalist A.J. Smoot led the Bulldogs’ defensive effort, recording 10 tackles, including three sacks, while forcing a fumble.
“I’m proud of some of our guys. Babbs and Charles Clay had good games,” Wright said. “A.J. can play. He’s got a motor. We brought him from the back side and it worked well. He had a few sacks behind the line and caused a fumble. It was typical (A.J.).”
Dora opened the scoring on its second drive with Steven Gosha hitting Sadarius Key for a 40-yard touchdown strike. Jack Spradlin made the first of his five PATs for a 7-0 lead with 1:38 left in the quarter. The Bulldogs second score came in the second quarter when Babbs went 30 yards for a touchdown as Dora pushed its lead to 14-0 with 10:40 left in the half.
Cordova got on the scoreboard less than three minutes later when Chase Trotter connected with Jaylan Clay for a 47-yard touchdown pass. The two-point conversion failed making the score 14-6.
Neither offense was able to get into a flow in the first half due to penalty flags. There were 15 flags thrown in the second-quarter alone and 21 in the opening half.
The Blue Devils had their chances in the first half with three drives starting inside the Dora 35-yard line. One drive ended on downs, two others ended with turnovers.
Dora pushed its lead to 21-6 in the third quarter when Charles Clay scored on a four-yard touchdown run with 3:58 left in the quarter. A Smoot sack led to a Cordova turnover on downs early in the fourth quarter. Dora scored three plays later on Babbs’ 22-yard run for a 28-6 advantage.
A Clay interception set up Dora’s last score — Babbs’ 36-yard run with six minutes left in the game.
Cordova scored the final touchdown when Jacob Key went 80 yards for a touchdown with 5:32 left.
Dora drove the ball inside the Cordova five-yard line on its final possession and ran out the last minute-plus by kneeling on the ball.
Trotter led the Cordova offense, completing 14-of-26 passes for 215 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Noah Ard led the Devils in receiving with seven catches for 81 yards.
For Dora, Gosha was 4-of-6 for 96 yards and a touchdown.
Key had two catches for 68 yards and a score while Alex Russell hauled in a 47-yard strike down the sideline.
Defensively, Taylor Trotter recovered a pair of fumbles, both on kick returns, for Cordova. Chris Evans had a fumble recovery for Cordova and Kenderra Taylor picked off a pass.
Charles Clay had a pair of interceptions for the Bulldogs and Nathaniel Robinson recovered a fumble for Dora.
“A lot of our guys grew up tonight,” Wright said. “Lets hope they did. If they didn’t, it’s going to be a long season.”