BIRMINGHAM — A hot start for Cordova had the Blue Devil faithful excited, but the Carver Rams slowly outpaced Cordova the rest of the way to secure a 24-14 home victory on Thursday night.
The Blue Devils began that aforementioned hot start by holding Carver to a quick 3 and out on the opening drive of the game.
From there, the Cordova offense went to work immediately, using a big 42-yard strike through the air from Cody Headrick to Cade Naramore to set up a short touchdown run by Jack Gable.
After two consecutive offsides penalties moved the ball within the 1-yard line, Coach Justin Palmer elected to go for the 2-point conversion. The same play was dialed up for Gable again, allowing him to convert the 2-point attempt and make the score 8-0.
It was not long before Carver answered however. The Rams used a balanced rushing and passing attack to move the ball down the field before scoring on an 18-yard run. Their PAT was no good, leaving the score 8-6 in favor of the Blue Devils.
After Cordova’s next drive stalled, Carver managed to overcome an assortment of penalties by throwing a 60-yard bomb on a 2nd and 32 play. Their fake field goal run was good to make the score 14-8. With 2:48 remaining in the half, Carver scored again, kicking a 28-yard field goal to extend their lead to 17-8.
The Blue Devil offense responded with an inspired drive, scoring on a 9-yard run by quarterback Cody Headrick with only 15 seconds remaining in the first half. The PAT by Headrick was no good, leaving the score 17-14.
Carver tried to score again with the few seconds remaining, but their long pass attempt was intercepted by Blue Devil cornerback Jalen Armistad.
The Blue Devils had all the momentum heading into halftime, but the hot start of the first half did not carry into the second half. Cordova’s offense was forced into five straight 3 and outs to open up the 3rd quarter. Meanwhile however, the Blue Devil defense matched that effort punch for punch as they also held the Rams to four straight 3 and outs.
During that superb defensive stretch, senior defensive back Jacob Kilgore recovered a fumble on Carver’s first series and linebacker Jack Gable came up with a sack and another quarterback pressure to end two more Carver drives.
The game remained within 3 points until Carver finally broke through the Cordova defense with a 48-yard touchdown toss on another second and long play. The PAT made the score 24-14.
Cordova rallied on the next drive, moving the ball all the way to the red zone before their drive stalled and Carver ran out the clock.
Despite the loss, Quarterback Cody Headrick had a quality game for the Blue Devils, racking up 173 yards on 13-23 passing.
Cordova (1-6) will return to Hudson-Kerby Stadium next week against Parker.