PROSPERITY — The Mid-Carolina Rebels (0-4) put up a fight against the Ninety Six Wildcats but lost 30-26.
Mid-Carolina started off strong when senior Terrell Long ran 55 yards in the first quarter for what he thought was a touchdown. The play was called back after a flag was thrown for holding against the Rebels.
The next play was a pass that was intercepted by Wildcats’ Daquan Carter for a touchdown, putting the score at 7-0 with eight minutes left in the quarter.
The Rebels threw another interception to senior Chris Booker with five minutes left on the clock. The Wildcats pushed the ball to the end zone, scoring another touchdown, making the score 13-0 going into the second quarter.
Mid-Carolina began to fight back, scoring their first touchdown after Terrell Long pushed through defenders to get to the end zone. The score was now 13-7.
The Wildcats got all the way down to the 40-yard line after the kick return but were pushed back 10 yards after a block in the back was called. They made it down to the 10-yard line but the Rebels’ defense would not let them into the end zone, forcing a field goal attempt with six minutes left in the half.
The field goal attempt was good and the score was 16-7.
With the ball back in their hands, the Rebels tried to get down the field to score another touchdown before the half was over. Junior Jalen Bates-Caldwell ran the ball 20 yards, giving the Rebels a first down at the 40-yard line with five minutes left on the clock.
The Wildcats defense kept Mid-Carolina out of the end zone and they got the ball back but gave the Rebels a second chance after a fumble on the 34-yard line was recovered by the Rebels with a minute left in the half.
Mid-Carolina tried to run the ball down the field but the clock was running out. With 24 seconds left in the half, the Rebels attempted a field goal but it was blocked by the Wildcats. The score was 16-7 at the end of the first half.
When the Wildcats came out after halftime, senior Saquon Garner ran 54 yards for a touchdown, increasing the Wildcat lead to 23-7.
“I told them that the last couple of weeks we’ve felt like we’ve laid down and we wanted them to go out in the second half and play just as hard as they did in the first,” Coach Louie Alexander said.
The Rebels fought back the whole second half.
Quarterback Cade Ruff scored the first touchdown in the third quarter by running for a 61-yard touchdown. The extra kick was no good and the score was 23-13 with five minutes left in the quarter.
The defense stopped the Wildcats from scoring the whole quarter and scored on a 50-yard touchdown pass after the Wildcats fumbled the ball with only 40 seconds left. The Wildcats blocked the PAT and the score was 23-19 Wildcats.
The Rebels defense continued to stop the Wildcats in the fourth quarter. With nine minutes left in the game, the Rebels scored on an 85-yard touchdown run, putting them in the lead — 26-23 — for the first time.
The Rebels defense forced a fourth down, but the Wildcats went for it with a 25-yard pass that resulted in a touchdown with only one minute left in the game. The Wildcats took the lead, 30-26.
With six seconds left in the game, Mid-Carolina got all the way down to the 3-yard line, but could not get the ball into the end zone before the clock ran out.
“We made mistakes in the first half that got us behind, but they came out and they played hard,” said Alexander.
Mid-Carolina takes on Abbeville on Friday.
JaKaylah Ravenell is a student at Newberry College.