SYLVESTER -- Could the Worth County Rams get any closer to recording a W?

Last Friday, playing in steady rain, the Rams very nearly pulled off the upset of the week.

After taking the opening kickoff and orchestrating an 11-play scoring drive, the Rams were clearly in the driver's seat against the Dougherty High Trojans at Albany's Hugh Mills Stadium.

"But after that we couldn't figure out how to put it in the endzone," said Worth County head football coach Harold Brantley. "We got the ball inside their ten two or three times and we'd shoot ourselves in the foot."

On one occasion, midway through the third quarter, the Rams fumbled on the two-yard line. The ball was picked up by Dougherty's Derrick Mathis and returned the length of the field for a touchdown. The Trojans were able to convert the two-point PAT and hang on for the 8-7 win.

"We held them to less than seventy yards on offense and we lost the game," said Brantley. "We saw so much good stuff, but we had too many mental mistakes."

Brantley feels like the Trojans are close to putting it all together, alluding to the fact that his team may be a little behind due to circumstances beyond their control."We had one preseason scrimmage canceled because of lightning," he recalled. "That could have helped, but who knows."

But the coach insists that he is not looking back as the always tough Crisp County Cougars come to Sylvester Friday.

"Crisp is going to be tough," said Brantley. "They've got one of the best quarterbacks in the area and they've got eight or nine back on defense.

"We're going to have to have an exceptional night to compete."

The coach is pleased with the progress of his own squad. First year starting quarterback Chris Marshall is making strides as Brantley said, "he's learning every day. He's trying to do everything that we ask him to do."

Against the Trojans, Marshall completed two passes for 40 yards and threw one interception. Marshall and running back Daniel Lewis were the leading ground-gainers for the Rams each picking up 43 yards.

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