Maplesville completes perfect season, wins title

Published 11:51 pm Thursday, December 4, 2014

By Drew Granthum

The Clanton Advertiser

AUBURN — After a disappointing loss to Pickens County in the AHSAA Class 1A state championship in 2013, the Maplesville Red Devils had one goal in 2014: Finish.

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And did they ever, absolutely dominating the Hubbertville Lions (14-1) in a 49-0 shellacking at Jordan-Hare Stadium in Auburn on Thursday.

The Devils won every battle on the field, starting with the coin toss, which they deferred possession to the Lions. Hubbertville managed seven plays before turning the ball over on downs in a failed conversion attempt, stifled by the Red Devil defense.

Maplesville’s offense responded quickly, taking just five plays to put the ball in the end zone on a 44-yard run by Terrance Dunlap to put the Devils ahead 7-0 after John Schoener’s extra point.

After a three-and-out by the Lions, Maplesville scored again, this time when Cole Spencer took the ball in from a yard out. Schoener nailed the point after, giving Maplesville a 14-0 lead with 3:07 left in the first.

The score was set up by a 38-yard pass from Spencer to Troy Harrison to set up the Red Devils on the Lion one.

Once again the Red Devil defense stepped up big, this time when Jerry Nix picked off Lions quarterback Vess Benton. Two plays later, Dunlap ripped off another long run, scoring from 28 yards out to give the Devils a 21-0 lead after Schoener’s third extra point.

Maplesville’s defense came up with another stop, leading to a six-play scoring drive on the ensuing Red Devil possession. On fourth-and-three, Spencer found Trevor Wallace for 51-yards and a touchdown. Schoener added another point after, increasing Maplesville’s lead to 28-0 with 6:34 left in the second.

After another Hubbertsville punt, the Devils blew the game wide open when Dunlap broke a 70-yard run for a score to go up 35-0 after Schoener’s extra point with 3:44 left in the half.

Maplesville took the 35-0 lead into halftime.

The Red Devils started the second half like they ended the first, adding another touchdown when Dunlap broke his fourth rushing touchdown of the contest, this time from 34 yards out to go up 42-0 after the PAT.

Maplesville tacked on another when Nathaniel Watson scored from 29-yards out. Schoener netted his seventh extra point of the contest, and with 5:41 left in the third, Maplesville held a 49-0 lead.

It was all either team scored in the contest, as Maplesville clinched its first state title in 18 years with the 49-0 win., clinching the program’s second state championship and first since 1996.

“We’re just happy,” head coach Brent Hubbert said.

“We’re happy we could come perform at a high level. These kids played hard all year, and I’m excited they got to (win) on the greatest stage.”

Hubbard also spoke highly of his defense, which recorded its seventh shutout of the season with the win.

“They play like this all the time,” he said. “They’re fast, they’re aggressive and they’ve played like that from the very start, and I’m excited to have a bunch of them back this year.”

Junior Corey Hall said he felt the win was as important to the town as the team.

“It’s a great experience,” he said. “I believe we brought joy to our community. It’s been a long journey for us.”

Dunlap, who was also named the game MVP, recorded 241 yards and four touchdowns on the ground. Spencer finished 4-of-7 passing for 106 yards and touchdown.

Wallace led all receivers with 51 yards.

On defense, Corey Hall and Nathaniel Watson recorded seven solo tackles, while Hall and Tyler Armstrong had two tackles for loss.

The Red Devils finished a perfect 15-0 on the season with the win.