Springfield slams door on Blue Devils unbeaten season
By Kris Freeman for White House Football
WHITE HOUSE – For a moment, it looked like White House had a chance to get back into the game against Springfield Friday night for Homecoming at Dewey H. Whitson Stadium.
Springfield (6-0) stuffed the Blue Devils on 4th-and-goal inside the 2-yard-line leading 15-0 in the second quarter, and rolled to a 39-8 victory and emerged as the only unbeaten team in the non-district matchup. White House (4-1) was held to 213 total yards with three turnovers.
Timmie Barbee rushed 13 times for 55 yards and three touchdowns and added a fourth score on defense, plus a two-point conversion run.
“We knew that Springfield was a good football team, and they have been putting up a lot of points, but you have to give credit to their defense. They really shut us down tonight,” said White House head coach Jeff Porter. “They played very well tonight and it was a tough game for us.
Ronald Honeycutt was among the season leaders locally in rushing, but the sophomore was held to 48 yards on 14 carries for the game and shut down at the 3 on the best drive by the Devils. Springfield responded with a nine-play, 97-yard march to make it 22-0, and later added another touchdown before halftime and a 29-0 edge.
Midway through the third quarter, Barbee took away a pass reception from Brian Mullins and returned it 40 yards for his fourth touchdown in the game. By then, the mercy rule was placed into effect.
“We had a chance to make it a one score game right before halftime,” Porter said. “But they made the stop and it was an uphill battle from there, and we had a difficult time stopping them. Give them credit, they were well prepared and they are a good football team.”
Springfield opened the game with three plays and a punt after Chris Baldwin broke up a third down pass. But Barbee returned the favor on White House quarterback, junior Steven Rankin, swatting away a pass from Caleb Huffines. Junior Logan Trimmer’s kick went out of bounds after 18 yards and the Yellow Jackets took over at the White House 36.
In seven plays, Springfield led 7-0. Senior Evan Lenk found Kyler Beerman on 3rd-and-goal from the 13, sliding into the middle of the endzone, with Dakota Carlisle kicking the extra point.
Four plays and a punt by Trimmer put the ball at the Springfield 11, but the second quarter drive was impressive to take a 15-0 lead. Barbee scored on a three-yard run to complete a 12-play, 89-yard drive, after an impressive third down throw of 32 yards to Kaine Wilson. Barbee also ran in the two-point conversion.
Springfield was 5-for-6 on third down in the first half and 0-for-3 in the second half. The Jackets gained 330 yards in the game and 264 of those on the ground.
The Blue Devils started at the 29 and drove 12 plays and almost six minutes to the 10, but four straight runs by Honeycutt turned it over. Alan Gardner busted a 31-yard run during the next scoring march for Springfield and Barbee finished with an 11-yard run for a 22-0 lead.
Gardner was shadowed by Barbee’s big night, but the powerful backed rushed 18 times for 125 yards to lead all players and Isaih Bigbee added 40 yards. Barbee touched it just 14 times but found the endzone on three carries. Barbee completed 2-of-5 passes in the game for 44 yards and Lenk added 2-of-2 for 22.
Late in the second quarter, Rankin attempted a first down pass at the 43 and was intercepted when the throw never made it past the line of scrimmage. Joe Denver picked it off with 1:12 to go in the first half and it took the Jackets six plays to make it 29-0. Barbee scored with five seconds remaining from the 1, but the play was risky.
Had Springfield failed, the Yellow Jackets were out of timeouts. Nevertheless, it was 29-0.
Carlisle missed a field goal on the first Springfield possession of the second half, but after Rankin hit Huffines for 17 yards, he slung a pass into the flat to Mullins on the visitor sideline and Barbee took it away, going to the endzone untouched. Officially ruled as a fumble recovery, the play resulted in a 36-0 lead with two minutes to go in the third quarter.
Carlisle added a 26-yard field goal, then Mullins hauled in a 13-yard pass from Rankin with 4:33 left to avoid the shutout. Trailing 39-8, White House recovered the onside kick but officials ruled Trimmer touched the ball at the 49. Houston Stone caught the two-point conversion pass from Rankin before the kickoff.
Rankin completed 12-of-18 passes for 163 yards with one touchdown and one interception. Huffines had three catches for 42 yards to lead the Blue Devils. A busy night on defense for the Devils was led by Trey Hyde with 15 tackles, followed by James Whitby and Tanner Jordan with nine.
Week six is huge for both teams. Springfield (6-0, 3-0) hosts Henry County (4-2, 3-0) Friday and the winner will be alone at the top of District 10-AAA.
White House (4-1, 2-0) travels to Nashville for the second year in a row to face White House Heritage (4-1, 1-0) on Thursday night at Vanderbilt Stadium. That winner will also lead District 9-AA.