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December 7, 2013

Clay knocks off Lakewood 40-38

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GREEN COVE SPRINGS - Clay RB Bilal Ally simply refused to go down.

Trailing 20-6 in the second quarter and faced with a fourth-and-eight and the season on the brink of ending, Ally took a swing pass from Blue Devil QB Wes Weeks and was hit once, twice and even stopped three times - but refused to go down. He broke free, streaked down the near sideline and gave the Blue Devils life.

Clay would go on to win 40-38 - but that score, which cut the lead to 20-13 Lakewood - served as the galvanizing point.

"That play on the sideline to Bilal (Ally) was a play that we've been working on for the last two weeks," said Clay coach Josh Hoekstra. "It was a good call. Ryan Wolfe (offensive coordinator) did a good job with the call. Bilal plays with a lot of heart. He gives so much effort. He's a lot of fun to coach."

Lakewood jumped back on top at the beginning of the third quarter when Ryan Davis found [db]Tyrae Boykins[/db] 20 yards behind the Clay defense. The extra point was blocked, and Lakewood led 26-20. Clay, however, drove right back down the field on the legs of Weeks and Ally, to knot the game at 26.

The Blue Devils would take the lead for good on Ally's 17 yard run with 11:14 remaining. The extra point kick would be the difference-maker, giving Clay a 33-26 lead.

As good as Clay played, Lakewood equaled. Ellison, Fowler and Ryan Davis matched the Blue Devils step-for-step - except in the extra point category.

Again, Lakewood answered with Ryan Davis scrambling 53 yards just two minutes later. The botched snap on the extra point was picked up by Jocqui Ellison, who was pushed out of bounds at the one-foot line.

Lakewood went for two four times - converting once. It ended up costing the Spartans.

The Blue Devils finally went up 40-32 on Ally's 2 yard run with 4:42 remaining.

But it wasn't over yet.

Lakewood and Ryan Davis quickly moved down the field. Davis scrambled for 16 yards, then Donterio Fowler broke loose for 11 yards. Davis then hooked up with a wide-open Andrew Davis, who had to wait on the ball and stepped out at the 12.

After a sack for a loss of three, Ryan Davis broke free for a 15 yard scramble for a touchdown with 2:17 remaining.

The ensuing two-point conversion try was intercepted by Colin Wilson.

Instead of an on-sides kick try, Lakewood coach Corey Moore elected to let his defense try and get the stop.

It didn't work.

Weeks and Ally milked the clock for the final 2:17 and the celebration began.

"We're going to enjoy this one tonight," Hoekstra said. "It's another opportunity to be with these guys. We have one more week together. This group of kids have been a lot of fun to coach."

Hoekstra complimented his quarterback, Wes Weeks, who wasn't the starter at the beginning of summer drills.

"We lost our starting quarterback the first week of the practice (Hunter Alexander) and we had to move Wes (Weeks) to starter. He's done a phenomenal job with this offense."

Weeks pointed to the sign on the fence - "keep swimming".

"I can't believe that our team has come back from a whole lot of adversity," Weeks said. "That's why we have the sign that says 'Keep Swimming'. I can't speak. It's unbelievable."

Clay has won its last three games by a total of five points.

"We make it worth the admission price," Hoekstra said.



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