The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

November 8, 2013

Last second field goal sends Athens to second round

By Jonathan Deal
jonathan@athensnews-courier.com

Center Point — Bram McGrady’s 45 yard field goal soared threw the uprights with five seconds remaining to give Athens a 24-22 win over Center Point in the first round of the state playoffs.

It was the longest field goal of McGrady’s career.

“I was a little nervous,” said McGrady. “It felt good when it left my foot. When I saw it hooking back, I knew it was in.”

McGrady’s game-winning field goal sent brought the traveling Athens crowd to its feet and players running down the sideline. Athens tackled the Center Point ball carrier to leave Center Point with a narrow victory.

“I think Bram does better with a little pressure,” said Athens head coach Allen Creasy. “We were confident he could make it.”

The game-wining field goal came after Center Point scored 22 unanswered points in the second half. Athens led 21-0 at halftime thanks to some big plays from its defense.

Derek Teague picked off Center Point quarterback Keillan Knight at the 10-yard line and returned it 90 yards to give Athens a 7-0 lead in the first quarter.

Defensive lineman Brian Sulcer read another Knight pass and returned it 45 yards for a score in second quarter. The Athens defense then forced a three-and-out that set up a Tarik Malone 66-yard touchdown run to the Golden Eagles up 21-0 at halftime.

Malone led Athens with 13 carries for 81 yards and score. Quarterback Stevie Farmer completed 5 of 17 passes for 107 yards with no interceptions.

Taylor Northern and Johnnie Anderson each had two sacks for Athens.

Athens will host a second round playoff for the first time since 2006 next week.