THOMASVILLE — The Brookwood Warriors didn’t leave their playoff fate to the hands of others Friday night.
The Warriors rolled past visiting Creekview Christian 21-3 in the regular season finale, securing a spot in the GISA Class AAA playoffs.
“We’re excited to be one of the 12,” Warriors coach Shane Boggs said, noting the 12 Class AAA teams that make the playoffs.
Brookwood’s defense, which gave up 56 points a week ago against Valwood, forced two turnovers and stopped the Cougars three times on fourth down.
“Our defense, I’m proud of them,” Boggs said. “They were kind of beat up. Obviously, we were not proud of the way we had been playing on that side of the ball. They did a good job against a good player and I think we did a good job of limiting them.”
Creekview Christian held the ball for 30:15 and of the Cougars’ 53 plays, 40 of them were Fernando Bryant rushing attempts. Bryant finished with 184 yards rush.
But after Brookwood struck to take the lead in the second quarter, the Warriors never gave it back.
Dalton Dorsey’s 33-yard field goal put the Cougars in front 3-0 with 6:28 to play in the first half. Four plays later, Brookwood senior quarterback Joe Parker, on a textbook play action pass, hit Nick Knifer in stride for a 69-yard scoring strike. Johnathan Burns’ extra point gave the Warriors a 7-3 lead.
“It was great execution by Joe,” Boggs said. “The protection was amazing on that play. That was definitely a huge play int he game.”
Still clinging to the 7-3 lead the Warriors went 82 yards in 12 plays, ignited by Kurtis Brown’s 31-yard reception on the sideline on the drive’s first play. Parker ended it with a 17-yard touchdown pass to Jacob Lauderdale with 31 seconds left in the third quarter. Penalties had pushed the Warriors out of a first-and-goal situation at the Cougars’ 6-yard before Parker’s touchdown throw.
“That was a huge play for us,” Boggs said. “We had way too many penalties. We did stop ourselves a lot in the first half.”
After another fourth own stop, Brookwood put the game away on a 71-yard drive, which Vincent Yokely ended with a 5-yard touchdown run. Burns’ PAT provided the final margin with 5:35 to play.
The Warriors finished with 362 yards of offense, and Parker was 14-of-17 through the air for 196 yards.
Brookwood, 6-5, will travel to Statesboro next Friday night to take on the Bulloch Academy Gators (8-2).
Editor Pat Donahue can be reached at (229) 226-2400 ext. 1806.