The Blountstown Tigers came up a little short in Orlando Thursday, unable to hand Madison its first loss of the season in the 1A State Championship game in Orlando.
The Tigers, 11-1 coming into the game at Camping World Stadium, struck first with a 13 yard touchdown pass that went Trent Peacock to Jamal Howard in the first quarter.
The Cowboys answered with a touchdown on a 4th and long play, a td pass from Tre Adams to Derrick Staten, it was tied at 7.
It stayed that way into the second quarter, that's where the Tigers grabbed the lead back, thanks to a 66 yard run by Peacock on a zone read option. He easily outran the secondary on the way to the end zone on that play, making it 14-7.
Again the Cowboys would answer, a long drive capped by a one yard plunge, and it was tied again at 14.
The Tigers again would take the lead on the final play of the first half, James Shores connecting on a 41 yarder and that made it 17-14 Blountstown at the intermission.
The third quarter belonged to the Cowboys, a long punt return set up the only score of that quarter, giving Madison the lead at 21-17.
The Tigers meanwhile hurt by two turnovers in the quarter, keeping the offense from generating any points.
Then in the 4th quarter, another Madison touchdown made it 28-17, the Tigers could answer only with another Shores field goal. And then a one yard plunge late in the game capped the scoring, giving Madison a 35-20 win.
Afterwards coach Jordan told us he was proud of his team's effort, in this game, and in fact all season long.
"We were able to take a lead on the field goal at the end of the half." Jordan said. "And you know we played great in the first half, didn't make mistakes. In the second half we went three and out our first possession and then they had the big punt return. And that sparked them and they got the ball inside our 20 and scored. And then they went ahead and we turned it over I think twice in that third quarter. They are such a good football team you can't do anything to ignite them or give them a spark and we did that. But our kids battled the entire game and played their tails off today"
And the coach says, this is a memory the kids will keep with them for a very long time.
"Absolutely and it was another great year! Our kids did everything we asked them to do. To be here and been able to play in this game, to be able to play on this special day, they'll remember this for the next 40 years for the next 40 years of their lives. It will be bittersweet not winning and everything but the experience of the week and everything they accomplished as a credit to those kids and our coaches and how hard they worked."