Colquitt County holds off Norcross 20-17 in wild finish

A Colquitt defender hits Norcross receiver Isaiah McKoy. Credit: Jason Getz/AJC

Colquitt County beat Norcross 20-17 in the third game of Saturday play in the Corky Kell Classic, as the clock ran out on the Blue Devils’ final drive before all-state kicker Jake Camarda could get off a potential game-tying field-goal attempt.

The game’s final drive ended in controversy. When it appeared that Norcross receiver Isaiah McKoy stepped out of bounds with 26 seconds to play, the game clock did not stop, and Norcross had no timeouts. Norcross moved to set up a last-second field-goal attempt, but after an official re-spotted the ball from the middle of the field to the left hash in the waning seconds, the snap came just after the clock hit zero. The 55-yard attempt after the whistle from Camarda, a Georgia commit and one of the top kickers in the country, went through the uprights.

“I really don’t know what happened,” Colquitt County head coach Rush Propst said of the final sequence. “I saw the officials move the ball, then the clock ran out. The clock was just out. They didn’t have any timeouts. The officials moved the ball from the middle to the left hash, and they didn’t have time to kick it.”

A short scuffle at midfield between the two teams was quickly stopped after the game, which had grown a bit chippy in the second half.

“I thought both teams played hard,” Propst said. “[Maloof] always has his teams ready. They fought hard to get back in it.”

“You can play those games 100 times and they will end up 50-50,” Propst added.

Colquitt scored the game’s first 13 points in the first quarter but did not score again until Ty Leggett’s game-winning 34-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter. Leggett took a handoff up the middle, made one cut at the second level and ran to the near pylon to give Colquitt a 20-17 lead.

“We had a heck of a play with Ty Leggett,” Propst said. “I knew he would break one eventually, we just had to get it to him, and we did.”

Leggett, a junior, finished with 82 yards on 32 rushes.

“I had the right guard pulling, I shuffled, got behind the right guard, [then I made a] jump cut,” Leggett said of his scoring run. “I saw the defender, so I just went inside and just got out there.”

Norcross got a game-changing play in the third quarter with a defensive touchdown to take the lead 17-13. Colquitt County quarterback Steven Krajewski was pressured by Christian Wright, and Keyshaun Williford sacked Krajewski at the Norcross 45 and forced a fumble. Dareus Barnhill picked up the fumble and went 53 yards for a touchdown.

Colquitt’s Daijun Edwards scored the first touchdown of the game on a 1-yard rush at the 5:50 mark of the first quarter. The Packers got two field goals in the period from Ryan Fitzgerald, who hit a 32-yarder to cap the game-opening 67-yard drive and a 22-yarder with 2:03 left in the quarter.

The Norcross defense tightened in the middle of the game, and the Blue Devils offense put them back in the game. Louis Williams threw a touchdown pass to Rekevian Mathis, and Camarda drilled a 52-yard field goal in the third quarter to pull within 13-10.

The win was Colquitt’s first over Norcross in three tries. The Blue Devils defeated Colquitt in both the 2012 and 2013 playoffs, both in the semifinals, on their way to back-to-back Class AAAAAA state titles.

“We’ve never beaten Norcross,” Leggett said. “It feels good to be the first class to beat Norcross.”

Norcross held its late lead despite gaining only 122 yards on 51 plays to Colquitt’s 292 yards.

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