BMS squad falls; coach retires

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By Brian Blair

All good things must come to end.

For the Bowling Middle School football game, that old adage became true Oct. 22 in more ways than one.

The Rebels took part in the first Middle School State Football Championship by hosting Grant County at Patterson Field in what would be the final game for longtime BMS Football Coach Jeff Jump.

Bowling Middle School finished the regular season with a perfect 8-0 record that included a win over the Braves earlier in the season.

The Rebels took the opening kickoff and were forced to punt.

In what turned out to be a theme of the evening, Grant County’s Tyler Robinson broke off a 48-yard run to the 5-yard line to set up first and goal.

The Braves were not be able to take advantage of the big run and fumbled the ball away to the Rebels.

Adam Hazlett hit Chris Day for an 85-yard completion that set up first-and-goal for the home team.

After three runs came up short, Collin Trammel got into the end zone from two yards out to give BMS the lead. After a successful two-point conversion, the Rebels led 8-0.

The Rebels had things going their way until a turnover gave the ball back to the Braves at their own 10-yard line early in the second quarter. The Braves took the ball and marched 90 yards down the field, capped off by a touchdown pass to Dustin Harr. A two-point conversion by Grant County tied the score 8-8 at the half.

The Braves received the second half kickoff and went 54 yards to take the lead when Nathan Davis scored on a short touchdown run. The conversion failed and the Braves led 14-8.

On their next drive, the Rebels looked to have gotten a break when Grant County was called for pass interference on a third-down play to give BMS a first down. The momentum was short lived as the Rebels then fumbled the ball back to the Braves.

Again, Grant County took advantage of the miscue. The visitors were able to convert on a fourth-down play to keep the drive alive before Robinson took a handoff and went 19 yards for a touchdown to give Grant County a 22-8 lead with less than five minutes left in the game.

On their next possession, the Rebels again turned the ball over, and again it lead to points for the Braves.

In the end, the Braves won the game 30-8 and ended the Rebels’ season.

After the game, Coach Tommy Tackett, speaking for an emotional Coach Jeff Jump, talked about how proud he was of this year’s team.

For Jump, there was a very good reason for him being so emotional. Not only did his team lose, but he also announced that he had coached his final game for the team.

“I am retired,” the coach said after the game.

Jump, who began his career in 1979 with Coach Guy Patterson, has spent 14 seasons coaching the BMS team.

Jump praised his final team for their work throughout the season.

“They are a wonderful bunch of kids,” Jump said.

Jump thanked his coaching staff for all of their hard work. He also wanted to make sure to recognize Janet Wright and the football boosters for all their support. He also thanked the Smith House for providing meals before games.

Jump said he wanted to thank BMS Principal Jo Wallace for all her hard work and support.