Ranburne prepares for biggest game
by Rip Donovan
Sports Correspondent
Oct 03, 2013 | 890 views |  0 comments | 0 0 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The biggest game of the year every year is even bigger for Ranburne’s football Bulldogs this season. On the line when the Bulldogs travel to Woodland Friday – in addition to bragging rights – will be Ranburne’s undefeated record and the possibility of home-field advantage in the opening round of the playoffs. Ranburne is 5-0 overall and 3-0 in Class 2A, Region 6 action. Woodland is 3-2 and 2-1, having lost to Fultondale 35-25 at home in Week 3.

“They are a big-play team, long pass, long runs,” Ranburne head coach Chad Young said of Woodland. “They’ve got a lot of kids that can run and the quarterback can throw the ball, throws the deep ball real well.”

Ranburne won at Woodland last year 14-6 in a physical game. Young said the determining factor this time will be protecting the ball and avoiding turnovers.

“I think it’s going to come down to whoever has the most turnovers is going to lose,” he said. “It’s almost going to be one of those games where a punt’s not a bad way to end a series.”

The Bulldogs enter the game against Woodland off a 36-21 road win over Beulah. After running for more than 300 yards against Vincent in Week 4, Ranburne passed for over 300 against Beulah.

“We try to take what they give us,” Young said of the contrasting totals. ”Some of it is strategic and some of it’s just what happens during the game.”

Against Beulah, Ranburne got the opening kickoff, drove 68 yards in eight plays and scored with 7:24 remaining when Kyle Lovvorn grabbed a pass from Dylan Wiggins from four yards out. The push was aided by a 15-yard gain on a Wiggins pass to Dylan Tullis, a 10-yard run by Wiggins and a 10-yard reception by Lovvorn. Jake Howle, who was 4-for-4 on extra points, gave the Bulldogs a 7-0 lead.

After Beulah scored to make it a 7-all game, Ranburne began its second possession at the Bulldogs’ 32-yard line with 3:33 left in the first quarter. A pass from Wiggins to Tullis for 35 yards was the big gain of the drive. On a third-and-12 situation, Wiggins and Brady Whittle connected for a 14-yard gain to keep the drive going. Whittle’s 1-yard run took the ball into the end zone with 10:10 left in the second quarter. Lovvorn ran for a 2-point conversion and Ranburne held the lead the remainder of the evening.

Young said he felt answering Beulah’s initial score was the turning point in the contest.

“We gave up a drive to them to tie it up and then we answered right back,” he said.
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Ranburne prepares for biggest game by Rip Donovan
Sports Correspondent

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