Tigers halt Bulldogs in alumni game

Wednesday, August 24, 2016
The Marshall County offensive line squares off against the Cornersville defensive front late in the 4th quarter of the Tigers 21-0 win. Tribune photos by Mike Inglsbee

Despite not playing each other in the regular season in over 15 years, the competition between Marshall County High and Cornersville High is as intense as any schools that play each other year in and year out.

Located just under 10 miles apart down highway 31-A, the Tigers play in the third largest classification in the TSSAA (4A) while the Bulldogs compete in the smallest classification (1A) but the two schools got together on Saturday night for one main purpose----to raise money for each respective school through competition in front of a standing room only crowd at Cornersville.

Helping schools

Cornersville QB Josh Polly walks up to the line of scrimmage to lead the Bulldog offensive drive.

"Well the profits that we make from this go directly to the high school football program, therefore we're helping them," Cornersville assistant coach Phil Dyer, who graduated with the class of 1971, stated. "Any amount of money that you can give to the high school football program is an assistance. They need the money."

Charity aside, the players from both teams still contain a competitive desire to go out and beat its rival and that much was apparent as tempers flared from both squads throughout the first half which was dominated on the scoreboard by the men from Lewisburg.

The Tigers put two scores on the board in the first half while holding the Bulldogs to zero.

Father and son duo Ashton and Clinton Posey talk strategy on the sideline with teammates Cory Burns and Trevor Cummings.

Barry Wayne Mays put the Tigers up early on a 50-yard punt return after the Cornersville offense stalled.

Air game

The Bulldogs failed to get much going on the next drive and the Tigers capitalized through the air to extend the lead.

One year removed from the high school field, 2015 TSSAA Mr. Football Finalist Ashton Posey lined up under center (which was manned throughout out the first half by father Clinton) and took to the air to hook up with Class of 2008 wide receiver Jaron Jones for a 15-yard touchdown catch and the two touchdown lead.

"I told my quarterback that the corner was playing too far off me," Jones said. "On the next play he threw me the ball and I took it to the house."

The first half would come to an unceremonious end as the referees ended the second quarter with five minutes left on the clock due to some extracurricular activities getting out of hand.

Slick night

The second half was a fight in the trenches as neither team was able get anywhere with wet footballs and a muddy field providing obstacles on a rain soaked night in southern Marshall County.

The Tigers were finally able to put one more extended drive together deep into the final frame as Posey hit class of '08 wide receiver Jared Robinson on the out pattern and Marshall County hit 21-0 on the scoreboard after kicker Cory Burns' third extra point of the night.

"The people that went to practice on the Sundays we practiced, they were there and putting in the work that we needed to put in and it showed tonight," the younger Posey noted. "I went to one the Marshall County scrimmages and it made me want to play again so I figured this would be a fun way to be able to do that."

The Marshall County offensive line squares off against the Cornersville defensive front late in the 4th quarter of the Tigers 21-0 win.

MC steps in

"This year Richland (Cornersville's alumni opponent in 2015) couldn't field a team so low and behold Marshall County helped us," Dyer said. "We had good depth we just couldn't pull it off. It was wet and nasty and the ball was wet. But this was all in good fun.

Competitive spirit aside, the alumni from both teams got together to strap on the pads one last time and raise cash for each school in the process, which the most important aspect to the annual alumni match-up.