Apalachee holds off Lanier comeback

SUGAR HILL -- Lanier's season opener in its first full varsity schedule became a story of missed opportunities as the hosts fell to Apalachee 21-11 Friday night.

"I was proud of the way our kids fought tonight but we have some things to work on. We missed some big chances and we have to learn to make the most of those when we get them." Lanier head coach Bill Wells said.

It looked as if the Wildcats (1-0) were going to make it a very long night for the Longhorns (0-1) when Zay Henry went 80 yards for a touchdown on the first play of the game, giving Apalachee an early 7-0 lead.

The Wildcats were able to take advantage of a Lanier fumble and went 58 yards in eight plays capped off by a seven-yard TD run by Eric Tanner.

The 14-0 lead for Apalachee would hold up until Lanier was finally able to capitalize on its first possession of the second half when Mason Harwood connected on a 40-yard field goal to make it 14-3 with 8:24 to play in the third quarter.

The Longhorns took over inside Wildcat territory and this time they went 48 yards in just four plays as Bernard Nuckles carried it in for a TD from 15 yards out. Taylor Grant hooked up with Izzy Sam for the two-point conversion and the Longhorns were within a field goal with the score 14-11 with 9:19 to play in the game.After a Lanier penalty, Tanner busted up the middle and scored his second TD of the game giving the Wildcats a 10-point advantage.

Tanner ended the night with 174 yards rushing on 25 carries and Henry had just six attempts but tallied 100 yards on the ground for Apalachee. Grant led the Longhorns' offense both throwing and running as he was 13 of 35 passing for 180 yards but also rushed for 53 yards on just six carries. Marty Sanders also had six receptions for 90 yards for Lanier.