Piedmont goes OT for second straight week, but falls to Class 5A Sylacauga 32-31

Staff Reports

PIEDMONT – For the second straight week, the Piedmont Bulldogs found themselves in a tight football battle that went to overtime. But unlike last week’s one-point win over Hokes Bluff, the Bulldogs fell short by a point to Class 5A Sylacauga by the final of 32-31.

Piedmont (4-6) built a 24-10 third-quarter advantage, but the Aggies (2-8) battled back in the fourth quarter on a pair of CJ Franklin touchdown passes – 18 yards to Quindavius Swain and 16 yards to Oden Bryce – to tie the game and force the extra period.

In overtime, Piedmont regained the lead at 31-24 on Hayes Gunn’s 2-yard touchdown run. Sylacauga answered with Ashton Machen’s 24-yard touchdown run. The Aggies then went for the 2-point conversion and the win. Franklin connected with JT Sumner on the conversion pass for the final.

Franklin led Sylacauga by completing 18-of-29 pass attempts for 232 yards and three touchdowns. Cole Wilson connected on 7-of-11 passes for 170 yards and two touchdowns – both to Ish Bethel – for Piedmont. He also had a 2-yard touchdown run in the third quarter to put the Bulldogs up 21-10.

Bethel caught three passes for 116 yards and two scores (83 and 26 yards). Gunn led the Bulldog ground game with 166 yards on 32 carries and a touchdown. Chase Cardelli connected on a 32-yard field goal with 5:20 left in the third quarter to give Piedmont a 24-10 advantage.

Piedmont will travel to J.B. Pennington in the first round of the Class 3A state playoffs next Friday.

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