LIVE OAK — After fumbling away a near touchdown just yards from the end zone in the first half of Friday’s spring game, Suwannee standout Jaquez Moore wanted a chance for redemption.
He got it by scoring the game-winning touchdown.
Moore hauled in a 49-yard TD pass from Tyree Taylor with 3:10 left in the fourth quarter to help the Bulldogs come away with a 16-10 victory against Ridgeview.
Moore, the do-everything player player for Suwannee, also had 11 carries for 63 yards in what was a pretty entertaining spring game that showcased a lot of Suwannee’s new and young talent.
“I missed my opportunity when I fumbled earlier. So before the play, I told coach Hall, ‘line me up on split and let me beat the dude one-on-one,’” Moore said. “Tyree gave me a great pass. It was just a really good connection. It felt really good."
While Suwannee doesn’t boast as much depth as last season — more than half of the starters played on both sides of the ball Friday — there were plenty of playmakers on the field for the Bulldogs.
Six players received carries, including newcomers Nyalen Seymour and Malachi Graham. Seymour got some tough yards inside for the Bulldogs and ran in both of their two-point conversions while Graham displayed his speed as a receiver and running back.
“We’re very young. Ton of guys this was their first time playing on Friday night,” said Suwannee coach Kyler Hall. “I’m proud of them.”
After Suwannee dominated the first quarter of JV action, the varsity teams battled for the final three quarters.
In varsity action, Ridgeview got on the board first, scoring on a 22-yard touchdown pass in the second quarter. Rolando Grey threw to Spencer Calise for what was the Panthers’ only touchdown of the night.
Trailing 7-0 in the third quarter, Suwannee went 75 yards on 12 plays for a touchdown and ran in a two-point conversion to take an 8-7 lead. That drive was a good display of Suwannee’s many weapons as Moore, Taylor, Seymour, Kale Twiggs and Antonio White all had carries to get SHS in the end zone.
Taylor capped it with a 12-yard touchdown run on a fourth-and-10 play.
“We’ve got four or five guys that can carry the rock and some physical guys that can get in there and block,” said Hall.
The Panthers regained the lead with a 25-yard field goal, going ahead 10-8 with 5:57 left in the fourth quarter. Suwannee came right back with the game-winning touchdown, which ended with Moore’s long touchdown catch on a fourth-down play.
On the defensive side of the ball, SHS made some typical errors that come in spring games. The Bulldogs had five penalties and missed a few tackles against Grey, Ridgeview’s elusive quarterback.
But the Bulldogs got a stop when they needed it. Ridgeview had one final shot on offense, down 16-10 with 3:10 remaining. Suwannee came up with two sacks and did not allow Ridgeview to get a first down on the final possession.
Hall was pleased with the effort and the result from Friday.
“It’s always good to win,” he said. “From a competitive standout, I thought our guys played really well. I like this group and the makeup of them.”