Radford jumped out to an early lead, and then had to hold a fourth quarter rally, in claiming a hard-fought 33-28 victory against George Wythe in the semifinals of the Region C, Division 2 playoffs Friday night in Wytheville.
The Bobcats jumped out to a quick 7-0 lead on a 7-yard scamper by Grant Mitchell and the PAT by Michael Goodman.
A 15-yard return by Mitchell on a blocked punt and Goodman’s PAT gave the Cats a 14-0 advantage.
The Maroons (7-4) would finally lightup the scoreboard on a 6-yard run by Brandon Atwell and then the PAT by Atwell would cut their deficit in half, 14-7.
Radford would tack on another score, this time a 65-yard gallop by DJ Palmer. The PAT failed, thus making it 20-7, Radford, heading into the second quarter.
After a scoreless second and third quarter, the Bobcats would be first to score in the fourth quarter, A 15-yard run by Dontae Carter and a failed two-point conversion would make it 26-7.
Atwell would then score on a 6-yard scamper and then make the PAT to keep George Wythe within striking distance, 26-14.
A 64-yard gallop by Carter and Goodman’s PAT would allow the Bobcats to pull out to a 33-14.
A pair of 11-yard runs by Atwell late in the fourth quarter would make the final 33-28, Radford.
Radford racked up 317 yards of offense, with 191 of those yards coming via airmail. Dontae Carter completed 11-of-17 passes and was picked once. Carter also led the ground game with 100 yards and a pair of touchdowns. DJ Palmer hauled in five catches for 100 yards.
George Wythe compiled 325 yards of offense, in which 222 yards came in the trenches. Brandon Atwell led the way with 159 yards and four touchdowns.
Radford (9-3) will travel to Fort Chiswell (11-1) Friday night to take on the Pioneers, a 22-9 winner over Chilhowie last night, for the Region C, Division 2 title.
Fort Chiswell, who had the #2 seed in the playoffs, are in the playoffs for the first time since 1990. The Pioneers are led by senior running back Chris Rodriguez, who has more than 1,900 yards, and Hody Viars on offense and defense.
The Pioneers held Chilhowie to 83 yards last Friday night, while piling up 310 yards of their own. Rodriguez led the ground game with 139 yards on 28 carries and a pair of touchdowns. Viars ran for 79 yards on seven carries.
Friday’s victory avenged an earlier season loss to George Wythe in September. The Bobcats’ slow 2009 start is a only distant memory now.
Radford rallied to win the Three Rivers District title and the season rolls along Friday night.