Jones leads Bears by Indians

Published 1:15 am Saturday, October 24, 2015

By Justin Fedich | The Selma Times-Journal

The Keith Bears trailed 21-8 at halftime, and they ended up winning the game by 19 points.

Keith (3-6, 2-3) outscored class 1A, region 3 opponent Loachapoka (4-5, 3-3) 32-0 in the second half to win its first home game 40-21 during its homecoming game Friday. Bears’ running back Domonique Jones ran for 227 yards, consistently putting Keith in scoring position as he broke off four rushes of 28 or more yards.

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“He’s a good coach,” said Keith head coach Harry Crum of Loachapoka head coach Jerome Tate. “I knew he was going to give me a test so it kind of got the best of us in the first half, but we were able to regroup.”

Crum and Tate have a long-standing friendship that extends far beyond the football field. Tate was a former Keith head coach and his mother is Crum’s neighbor. Crum said Tate’s mother is like a grandmother to Crum’s children.

Tate, a graduate of Selma High School, knew much of the community that came out to support Keith Friday.

“It’s home and it’s good to see some of the old folks,” Tate said.

Loachapoka struck first, as quarterback Stephen Harris threw a touchdown pass to Deondra Nelms in the first quarter and Jaylen Lee in the second quarter. Keith trailed 14-0 with 10:53 remaining in the second quarter.

The Bears responded when a strong kickoff return put the ball on Loachapoka’s 15-yard line, and quarterback Brian Crum ran a 15-yard touchdown. Ja’Quan Lipscomb punched in his first of three two-point conversions on the night to lower the deficit to 14-8.

Loachapoka added one more score before the half when Jyquan Combs ran a 3-yard touchdown with 55 seconds remaining.

The second half belonged entirely to the Keith Bears.

“I knew they had it in them,” Crum said. “After the half when they started playing, I said they woke a bear up out of hibernation and everything just fell into place.”

It took Keith the first four plays of the third quarter to score a touchdown. The Bears trailed just 21-16 when Keith’s Devion Johnson intercepted his first of two passes.

Crum completed just one pass all game, but it was the pass that gave Keith its first lead of the game.

Crum connected with Travis Goldsby on a 28-yard touchdown to take a 24-21 lead with 5:37 left in the third quarter.

Keith’s Mark Young Jr. intercepted a pass in the fourth quarter to set up a Crum 1-yard touchdown run. Johnson intercepted his second pass with 2:42 remaining in the game, and Ja’Quan Lipscomb finished the drive with a 7-yard touchdown run.

Craig Carter and Nigil Pettway added the final two two-point conversions.

“Those kids wanted it,” Tate said.

“Their seniors really wanted to win their homecoming.  I give them all the credit in the world because they worked hard for this.”

With Ellwood Christian’s loss Thursday, Keith came into the game with a spot in the class 1A playoffs already locked up.

Keith finishes its regular season at Central Hayneville next Friday.