MABLETON -- Less than a week after arranging a game with Dodge County, Whitefield Academy came away with a 17-14 victory over the perennial Class AA state playoff team at Wolfpack Stadium on Saturday.
The game was arranged Monday after Whitefield’s scheduled home contest with St. Francis was cancelled due to COVID-19 concerns, so the Wolfpack -- which was originally scheduled to have a bye week -- had only five days to familiarize themselves with a team that was coming off a 33-20 victory over defending AA state champion Dublin in its last game on Sept. 11.
Whitefield (2-2) proved to be up to the challenge.
“With everything that went into it and knowing what a good football team (Dodge County is) -- their last game, they beat the defending state champions in Class AA -- I’m extremely pleased to win this football game,” coach Coleman Joiner said. “It’s a game, the last couple years, we’ve been trying to put ourselves in a position to beat a physical team like that and I was really, really proud of our guys for not just hitting back, but hitting first. I was proud of the physicality and the toughness of our team (Saturday).”
Dodge County (1-2) struck first on the first offensive series of the game when Reco Caines scored on an 8-yard run for a 6-0 lead.
Dodge County got the ball back immediately when Whitefield fumbled the kickoff return, but gave it back up as Ayden Duncanson intercepted a Noah Cummings pass at the Wolfpack 5-yard line.
The Wolfpack capitalized on the opportunity when Duncanson rumbled 76 yards into the end zone on a quarterback keeper with 5:19 to go to make it 7-6.
Nolan Shim added to the lead when he kicked a 20-yard field goal for a 10-6 advantage with 4:11 remaining in the first half.
Dodge missed an opportunity to close the gap at the end of the first half as a 35-yard field goal attempt fell short with 2 seconds left.
Whitefield increased its lead to 17-6 at the end of the third quarter when Duncanson threw a 55-yard touchdown pass to Eric Little.
Dodge County was able to narrow the gap at the end after Sherman Clay intercepted a Duncanson pass and ran it back 31 yards for the touchdown with 6:52 to go in the game.