BECKVILLE — Union Grove took advantage of four Beckville turnovers Friday night and kept its perfect record alive with a 35-14 win on the road to close out non-district play for each team.
The Lions (5-0) scored two touchdowns in the third quarter off of Bearcat miscues to extend a 6-0 halftime lead and ultimately take control of the game.
Beckville took the opening kickoff and pushed the ball to the Union Grove 27 before an interception put the ball in the Lions’ hands for the first time.
Punts were traded after the turnover, but another interception stopped a Beckville drive in Union Grove territory and led to the first score of the contest.
The Lions took over from the Bearcats 47 and found themselves at the 10-yard line after a 10-yard run by Corey Sturrock and a 27-yard pass from Tristen Thompson to Rans Mullins. A few runs for loss and a false start penalty backed Union Grove up to the 22, but on third and goal, Thompson floated a pass to Mullins, who scored to put the Lions on the board with 3:57 left in the second quarter.
The Lions added to their lead on the opening drive of the third quarter and turned a Beckville fumble into a touchdown to quickly tack on 16 points.
Thompson found Hunter Gray on fourth-and-6 for a 33-yard score to put Union Grove up 14-0. Gray then scooped up a fumble on the Bearcats next play from scrimmage and returned it 27 yards to give the Lions a 22-0 lead with 7:40 left in the third quarter.
Beckville managed to respond on the ensuing drive to post their first touchdown of the game. The Bearcats faced a fourth-and-goal from the 13 when Braden Wise hit Jake Tondreau for the score.
Wise rolled right, pulled the ball down to run, but changed his mind and fired a pass to Tondreau near the front pylon.
Union Grove, however, added six more point just four plays later. Shayne Brown burst through a hole and ran 49 yards for a touchdown.
Beckville fumbled on its next offensive play and the Lions tallied their final score two plays later on a five-yard run by Brown with 11:43 left in the game.
The Bearcats recorded their final touchdown with the next possession and attempted an onside kick, which Union Grove recovered. Jacari Reed ran in Beckville’s score from 10 yards out with 5:45 to play.
Reed led the Bearcats with 108 yards on 23 carries. Wise ran for 23 yards and threw for 47 yards on four completed passes. Trail Smith rushed for 25 yards and caught a 22-yard pass. Bryce Harris added 24 yards on the ground.
Brown ran for 61 yards to lead the Lions. Thompson threw for 125 yards and two scores.