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December 10, 2011
ORLANDO -- The offense did it early - the defense did it late.
Bolles scored 21 unanswered points in the fourth quarter after falling behind 25-12 and the Bulldogs knocked off Booker T. Washington 33-25 with a tremendous goal line stand.
After Tim Betros scored on a 32-yard run to give the 'Dogs a 26-25 lead, Booker T Washington fumbled the kickoff and Cody Boswell recovered it for the Bulldogs, giving Bolles a 33-25 lead.
Washington raced down the field, reaching the two yard line before the Bolles defense forced a sack of Treon Harris at the five. That forced Booker T. to use their last time out with 20 seconds remaining.
"I couldn't have done it without my teammates," said Tejada, who led the Bulldogs with 12 tackles and had the 'Dogs only sack of the night. "We gave up some big plays but we stepped up when we had to. All of our hard work showed right there."
On fourth down, again Harris went into the middle of the zone - again the ball was tipped - this time by Michael Cassidy and after Larry Mathis made a diving attempt, the ball fell to the ground and the Bulldogs began to celebrate.
It is the eleventh state title for Bolles - the tenth for head coach Corky Rogers who passed George Smith for most post-season wins.
"We didn't know this could happen," he said. "I'm really excited about this one because the kids overcame so much adversity to get here. They've (Washington) got a fine, well-coached team but we just made some plays when we had to. We were pretty fortunate."
Washington took a 25-12 lead in the third when Harris scrambled five yards for a score with 5:16 remaining in the third. After the two-point conversion to Mathis, the Tornados had a comfortable 13 point lead.
Senior running back Milton Revell began the comeback with a 6-yard run with 9:58 to play, capping a 9-play, 59-yard drive to bring the Bulldogs within a touchdown, 25-19.
The Tornadoes (12-2) were unable to move the ball on their next possession and the Bulldogs took over at their own 42-yard line with 7:37 to play.
Faced with a 4th-and-1 on the Washington 49-yard line, the Tornadoes were called for encroachment to keep the Bolles drive alive. Seven plays later, Betros scored on a 33-yard touchdown run with 3:52 to play to give the Bulldogs a 26-25 lead.
"All the credit goes to my offensive line," said Betros, who finished with a game-high 117 yards on 14 carries in winning his second state title. "I had the easy job. The holes were wide open and I just went through them."
Bolles scored first on a Brooks Abbott 35-yard field goal with 5:09 left in the first quarter.
Washington came right back down the field, with a 13-play, 80 yard drive to take a 7-3 lead on a Dvon Ballard three-yard pass from Treon Harris with eight seconds left in the first.
Bolles came back down the field, driving 74 yards on eight plays with D.J. Stewart scoring from 1 yard out to give Bolles a 9-7 lead after Abbott's extra point was low.
Bolles created the next Booker T. Washington scoring opportunity when Abbott fumbled a punt snap and Matthew Thomas recovered it at the Bolles three. The Bulldog defense stiffened, however, and Milton Salgado kicked a 19-yard field goal to give Booker T. a 10-9 lead.
Booker T. Washington would strike again with 39 seconds remaining in the half when Harris found no one open, so he scrambled 10 yards for a score and gave the Tornados a 17-9 lead.
Bolles quickly moved down field and got a controversial pass interference call just before the half to set up Abbott's 40 yard field goal to cut the deficit to five - 17-12.
Bolles finishes the season at 13-1 - its only loss coming to Raines, 26-21. Washington finishes the year at 12-2 with a loss to Miami Central to start the year and a loss to Bolles to end it.
"When you step between the lines, it's who wants it more," added Rogers. "They (Washington) weren't laying down either so give them credit. It just came down to a play - one play."