The energy in Brentwood was absolutely on fire as both sidelines were standing room onlyand the endzone with seating was 4 rows deep with lawn chairs. Both student sections were rocking and the Ravenwood students, who had even brought a huge stuffed bear they were torturing, were literally bending the floor of the high-rise bleachers they were jumping up and down on. The Battle of The Woods Rivalry was in full effect and Brentwood residents were out in full force in all white for the Bruins or all black for the Raptors.
The defenses seemed to feed off of that energy the most as both teams were flying around early and making plays. Early games on the only progress to find was Ravenwood winning the field position battle by forcing Brentwood to punt multiple times, but they couldn’t capitalize as their own offense turned it over on downs twice near or just past midfield.
As the second quarter began Trey Dorris took that field position back for the bruins with multiple gashing run plays that took the ball deep into Ravenwood territory. Facing a third and goal from the five, the Bruins broke the seal in the second quarter as Baylor Hayes rolled out to his left, squared up to the endzone and found Miller Orum near the back boundary. The sea of white in the home stands erupted contrasting the disappointment of the blackout stands across the field. The PAT was good and Brentwood led The Battle of The Woods 7-0 with just over five minutes to go in the half. The battle for field position took a turn in the Bruin’s favor as Maddox McKim sacked Femi Babalola effectively stalling the Raptors drive to reaping and giving his offense the ball back near midfield after a Ravenwood punt. A 30 yard run from Clayton Merrill on a nicely designed reverse play immediately set up the Bruins in scoring position once again. It didn’t take long before Hayes found Charlie Mullis over the middle for a Brentwood touchdown to make it 14-0 Bruins with less than two minutes remaining in the half.
To start the second half Ravenwood, needing a response to the first half by Brentwood, mounted what was an effective and efficient drive until the Bruins defense stood firm near midfield. The Raptors decided to go for it on fourth down and had a wide open receiver streaking down the seam but Babalola never saw him due to the pressure and eventual sack by Seth Adams and the Bruins took over on downs once again. The Bruins clock management continued to squeeze the clock as Brentwood went on a drive into the Raptor redzone that ended in just a field goal to extend the lead to 17-0 and left just over 40 seconds remaining in the third quarter. As we went to the fourth that would remain our score with Ravenwood in possession of the ball needing points.
After both teams traded punts to begin the quarter, Ravenwood began to move the ball on their second drive. The issue being that the clicked ticked under eight minutes as the Raptors passed midfield. Being down three possessions, Ravenwood needed points fast to have a chance to come back in the district championship. They were not able to find those points and Brentwood took over on down AGAIN. Ravenwood had punted one time on the night and yet had zero points; a testament to a Bruins defense that had been on fire since the opening kick. The Bruins were more than content to run not just the ball but the clock and by the time Ravenwood forced a punt they had just four minutes remaining to try to make something happen. With too much score to overcome in too little time the celebration started early in the Bruins’ student section as they would be crowned “The Real Wood” for at least 365 days. As the two rivals shook hands the Brentwood student section rushed the field celebrating their Bruins’ 17-0 victory making them 10-0. You can watch the post game celebration below as well as listen to what Coach Finch had to say about his team’s special season
Our MVP is Baylor Hayes. Baylor threw both touchdown passes for the Bruins and excelled under pressure as he predicted he would in my interview with him earlier this week. Baylor also hilariously ended up with Ravenwood’s stuffed bear. You can hear his plans for the bear in the interview below.