Cloudland routs Midway behind Coffey’s three scores

Published 10:49 pm Friday, November 3, 2017

How do you like your Coffey?
Piping hot was the answer to that question as junior tailback Jordan Coffey scored on a 1-yard run, a punt return and an interception as Cloudland routed Midway 50-13 on Friday night at Orr Field in the opening round of the TSSAA playoffs.
“We all came out ready to play tonight,” Coffey said. “My blockers blocked well. I couldn’t ask any more of them. It’s the first time I have scored on offense, defense and special teams.”
Coffey rushed for 96 yards and a touchdown in the first half as the Highlanders (9-2) took a 22-7 halftime advantage over the Green Wave. Junior quarterback Malachi Benfield connected with senior Jacob Singleton on a 54-yard scoring pass, which along with the two-point run by Coffey gave Cloudland the 15-point lead.
Benfield completed three-of-five passes for 79 yards and touchdown as he out dueled Midway junior quarterback Jason Taylor who completed 5-of-10 for 84 yards but was intercepted twice. Both interceptions led to Cloudland scores as Benfield got the first one giving the ‘Landers possession at the Midway 40 yard line.
Six plays later Coffey scored on a 1-yard run and added the deuce as well for an 8-0 Cloudland lead. Midway (5-6) answered with a smart six play, 67 yard drive – aided by a ‘Landers personal foul penalty – and Taylor capped the drive with an eight yard scamper.
Gilbert Velarde added the point after kick to make it an 8-7 contest. The Green Wave forced a Highlander punt on the next sequence, but Taylor was picked off at the 20-yard line by Tristan Lacy who returned the pilfered pigskin 48 yards to the 42-yard line. Josh Blair capped the five-play drive with an 18-yard run.
The Green Wave opened the second half with a 63-yard scoring pass from Taylor to Andrew Burton to cut the ‘Landers lead to 22-13, but that was as close as Midway would get on this night.
“The last few weeks helped us get prepared a little bit,” ‘Landers head coach Mike Lunsford said. “We didn’t back down one bit. The last few weeks we had some tough situations against Johnson County and last week. Coach Benfield and White decided to mix in more zone and in and out it a little bit more and we got better as the game went on.”
Taylor ended the night with 12-for-25 passing for 178 yards but he was intercepted four times on the night.
Coffey went to work early in the fourth quarter going 37 yards on a punt return for a score and one play later picked off Taylor and raced 44 yards to pay dirt as the ‘Landers now led 36-13. On the punt return Coffey said, “We were just trying to keep the big lead and my blockers set things up well and got out in front.”
Lacy would add a rushing touchdown from 15 yards out and Conner Birchfield capped the scoring with a one yard scoring plunge.
Coffey finished the night with 142 yards rushing on 26 carries.

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