The Hueytown Golden Gophers (1-2, 1-0) hosted the Brookwood Panthers (2-1, 0-1) on homecoming and were determined to get a win after falling to formidable foes Ramsay and Clay-Chalkville on the road to open the season. The Golden Gophers, behind reigning Gatorade Player of the year quarterback Earl Woods, did just that, defeating the Panthers 67-13 to open region play.

"Well, my guys, we challenged them after coming out 0-2 against two pretty good football teams. Just challenged them, it was still about us. We gotta fix our issues and go into region play and handle our business and they accepted the challenge and did exactly what they needed to," said Hueytown head coach Greg Patterson.

Hueytown utilized its athleticism, scoring touchdowns on its first 10 consecutive drives of the game. The Golden Gophers maintained balance, scoring five passing touchdowns, and five rushing touchdowns.

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Unfortunately for the Brookwood, the Panthers offense couldn't keep up. They were forced to punt on four drives in the first half and failed to convert on downs on two others.

"Our effort and intensity wasn't there tonight. Hueytown has a good team, has some great athletes. They played balls-to-the-wall all night. We've gotta come back next week, kind of respond a little bit better, go back and look at the film, chalk it back up and we're gotta work on what we've gotta work on," said Brookwood assistant head coach Ronnie Clark.

Clark spent time directing the Panthers from the sidelines this week as head coach Mike Bramblett unfortunately tested positive for COVID-19 and had to quarantine.

Woods and the Hueytown starters were pulled from the game just prior to halftime with the score sitting comfortably for the Golden Gophers at 47-7. Woods finished his game completing 9-for-11 passes for 242 passing yards with 4 touchdowns, he also managed 44 yards on the ground.

"Earl's a special player, everybody knows that. He's going to make plays for us when we need it. Just real happy the way he led our team all week and came out tonight and did what he was supposed to do," said Patterson.

He was helped by Deandre Franklin, who managed to haul in 2 receptions for 71 yards and 2 touchdowns while also getting into the endzone on a 4-yard rush. Junior running back Jakhael Rowser managed 49 rushing yards and 2 touchdowns and had a single reception for 47 yards. Senior Branquez Haynes hauled in 3 passes for 58 yards and a touchdown. Junior Dacorian Thomas pulled in 2 receptions for 47 yards and a touchdown.

Both coaching staffs agreed to a running clock in the second half after the first half finished 61-7.

The Golden Gophers offensive explosion didn't end with the starters as backup running back Derrick Davis chipped in 61 yards on the ground and a touchdown and backup quarterback JeBron Ellington went 1-for-3 with 34 yards and a passing touchdown, while also rushing for 78 yards and a score.

The Panthers were able to get into the endzone once each half thanks to the connection between quarterback Kobie Humphries and Otis Sims. Humphries went 4-of-13 passing for 91 yards and 2 touchdowns. Sims hauled in 5 receptions for 76 yards and both the Humphries passing scores.

The Panthers also utilized sophomore quarterback Jacob Rowell who completed 2-of-7 passes for 11 yards, he unfortunately turned the ball over twice, with an interception and a fumble lost on the evening.

"They checked our guts tonight. Just us coming back to work and getting back better in the second half. Just try to do our base things and get back to what we're doing. We've just gotta go back and look at the film and make sure we're ready to go for the next game," said Clark.

Brookwood will have to wipe the slate clean this week as they continue region play. The Panthers will host the Central Falcons in what will likely be a close contest.

Hueytown can't take its foot off the gas this week as they look to get back to the state championship game, they face a loaded Hillcrest Patriots team next week at home in what may determine the region winner.


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