BY SHEA ODOM
The Greenville Standard
The McKenzie Tigers traveled to square off with the Red Level Tigers on Friday night, Sept. 6 for a ferocious regional match-up but left losing 34-24.
McKenzie won the coin toss and deferred to the second half. Red Level capitalized on their first offensive possession.
The black and gold Red Level Tigers pushed hard and fast straight to the end zone for a touchdown and successful two point conversion gaining a 8-0 lead early in the first quarter.
McKenzie was unable gain any ground with their possession and fumbled the ball late in the drive. Red Level then made a long rush straight to the end zone securing a lead 14-0.
After a fast three and out McKenzie drive, they recovered a Red Level fumble. McKenzie’s Kamern “Bo” Daniels made a short run, putting the Tigers on the scoreboard but still trailing 14-6 with 4:36 left in the first quarter.
Red Level came back on the offense with a long pass that found its way to the end zone widening the Tigers lead 20-6 at halftime.
Red Level returned from halftime recharged and scored on another long drive following another short McKenzie three and out and led 27-6
McKenzie made a hefty attempt for a comeback as senior Zanderion Cook pushed the chains for a 20- yard run. Freshman Jah’Marren “Jay” Jackson then made a short run which closed the gap to 27-12.
McKenzie was unable to maintain the momentum and Red Level forced another fumble early in the fourth quarter.
Red Level then navigated their way back to the red zone and scored again gaining a 34-12 lead.
McKenzie sophomore, Tray Rudolph, closed that gap scoring for the Tigers following a short run making the score 34-18.
Red Level gained yardage on their next possession but added nothing to the scoreboard. Jackson then made a great 24-yard snatch for another McKenzie touchdown late in the fourth quarter but ultimately, the McKenzie Tigers were defeated 34-24.
The 1-1 McKenzie Tigers will host the 2-0 Brantley Bulldogs for a region game this Friday night at Williams-Vickery field at 7p.m.