A late rally by Mt. Juliet came up short at Centennial Friday in a 38-24 loss.
Mt. Juliet trailed 28-10 at the half, but came within 31-24 late in the fourth quarter. However, Centennial was able to ice the game with a late score.
The first was back and forth, as big plays defined the quarter. Centennial struck first with a Deon Sanders 24-yard run, but a big kick return by Kyle Smith set up a 47-yard run by Courtland Douglas on the first play of the drive to tie the game.
B.J Griffin gave the Cougars the lead back on a 44-yard run, but Mt. Juliet was able to get points to answer. The Bears had a 14-play drive, including a touchdown run by Smith that was called back, but the drive stalled at the 11-yard line. After a 5-yard penalty, Garrett Zickgraf, in for an injured Justen Dubay, kicked a 33-yard field goal to cut the lead to 14-10.
Centennial controlled the second and third quarters, pushing their lead out to 31-10. But Mt. Juliet went down slugging in the fourth quarter. Two big plays for scores cut the lead to a touchdown. Smith had another big run, this time from 55-yards out to make it 31-17, and then Alex Landis connected on a bomb to Patrick Cartmell for 53 yards to make it 31-24.
The Cougars were able to keep the ball and run out the rest of the clock while tacking on another score.
Smith finished the day with 106 yards on 11 carries. Alex Landis was 10-for-18 on the night for 110 yards through the air. Ahmad Bradley pulled in seven catches for 53 yards.
Mt. Juliet is on the road again next week as they travel to Beech. Kickoff is 7 p.m.