By Brian Hoffman
Glenvar’s final drive ended with a goal line interception as the Highlanders dropped a heart-breaker at Galax last Friday. The Maroon Tide held on for a 27-20 win in the season opener for both teams.
“It was disappointing, we led for most of the game but they made the plays at the end,” said Glenvar coach Kevin Clifford. “It was a total team loss. There were so many things we didn’t do well.”
The game was tied at 13-13 at the half as the Highlanders got a “pick six” from Nick Woodson and two field goals from Carl Muse, one from 35 yards out and one from 28. Glenvar then took the lead, 20-13, in the third quarter on a touchdown run by Elijah Carter.
The Highlanders led well into the fourth quarter before the Tide scored with 7:50 on the clock, however they missed the extra point and the Highlanders retained the lead at 20-19. That held up until just under four minutes remained when Galax took a 27-20 lead, converting a two-point try after the score.
Glenvar’s final drive had the Highlanders at the 35 yard line with two timeouts remaining. However, Eli Taylor’s pass was intercepted on a post pattern route to Jackson Swanson and the Tide was able to run out the clock and win the game.
“We just got outplayed and I got outcoached,” said Clifford. “They had a good game plan. Some credit goes to them. There’s a reason they’ve been in the state finals.”
Carter led the Glenvar rushing with 56 yards on 18 carries. Taylor completed 15 of 28 passes for 146 yards but had two interceptions. Gabe Ford and Woodson had three catches each to lead the Highlanders.
On defense, Shane Gibson and Jack Camper had 10 tackles each while Gibson had two tackles for losses and Camper had a blocked punt. Woodson had three solo tackles and the interception before leaving with an ankle injury.
This week the Highlanders will try to bounce back as they host Martinsville for their home opener. The Bulldogs had their bye week last Friday, so this will be their season opener. Glenvar won a regular season game in Martinsville last year, 25-7, as the Bulldogs finished the season 5-6. The two met again in the playoffs and this time Glenvar won 38-0 at Highlander Stadium.
“This week in practice the focus will be on us,” said Clifford. “We had an easy time with some teams that weren’t as good in our scrimmages and that may have hurt us against a good team like Galax. Martinsville is very athletic and this week we’re going to find out quickly where we’re at.”