CRESTVIEW — The Crestview High School football team wrapped up spring practice Friday night with a hard-luck loss to Navarre in the second half of the jamboree.
The Raiders capitalized on a pair of Bulldog turnovers to take an 18-14 win from Crestview.
Bulldog coach Tim Hatten pointed out the little things can snowball and beat you.
“It’s the little things,” he said. “The little things become the big things, you know.
“I think we were light years ahead of what we should tonight. At times we were very brilliant tonight. And when we put our twos in there we didn’t look it with our twos and it cost us six points maybe more that.”
The Bulldogs needed just three minutes and 15 seconds to march 70 yards for the first score of the half.
The high-octane offense Hatten installed featured four quick strikes from quarterback Khalil Foster to running back Jaylynne Robinson good for 21 yards and strong running from Emanuel Reed to find the end zone.
Reed finished off the 11-play drive, which included a personal foul against the Raiders, with a 2-yard scoring run. David Born added the extra point to make it 7-0.
Crestview’s second drive of the half covered 80 yards on just five plays.
Derian McGee picked up two yards on the ground on first down. Foster hit Ronnie Baylark for a pass that was good for nine yards and a first down on the second play of the drive.
Back-to-back passes from Foster to Robinson netted 18 yards to give the Bulldogs a first down on their own 49-yard line.
Foster hit Reed with a swing pass down south sideline and the rising junior running back did the rest going 51 yards for the touchdown.
It looked as if Crestview’s 14-0 lead might stand as the Bulldog defense put the clamps on the Navarre offense early in the half.
The Raiders picked up their first points of the half when the Crestview backups fumbled a ball that rolled into the end zone that Navarre recovered for the score with 44 seconds left in the quarter.
The Bulldogs still led 14-6 when the Raiders took possession of the ball at their own 41-yard line with 1:26 left in the game.
A quick 12-yard pass from Teddy Harrell gave the Raiders a first down at the Crestview 47.
Harrell’s next pass was incomplete. And on the next play Derek Smith raced 47 yards for a touchdown to pull the Raiders within two points with a little more than a minute to play.
All the Bulldogs had to do was hold onto the football and run out the clock. But the unthinkable happened and the usually reliable Reed had the ball knocked loose. Navarre recovered the fumble on the Crestview 31-yard line with 58 seconds left.
A pass interference call against the Bulldogs gave the Raiders a first down at the Crestview 16. Two plays later Harrell found Quentin Randolph with a 14-yard touchdown pass with 34.3 second left that turned out to be the game winner.
Out of timeouts, and 70 yards from the end zone, the Bulldogs were forced to try and work the sidelines so they could get out of bounds to stop the clock.
Foster hit Robinson with a pass good for five yards and Reed with a 2-yard pass. Forced out of the pocket on a third-and-3, Foster scrambled 12 yards for a first down at the 49.
A quick pass to Matt Gillis moved the ball to the Raider 45 to set up one last play for the Bulldogs.
Foster hit Cyrus Daniels with an 11-yard completion as the clock expired and the Raiders held on for the comeback win.
Foster was 15-of-19 passing for 149 yards in the half. He finished the night against Navarre and Escambia a combined 28-of-39 for 300 yards and two touchdowns.
Reed had three catches for 65 yards against the Raiders. For the night he had nine catches for 139 yards and a touchdown. He also had a total of 36 yards rushing and one touchdown.
Robinson had eight catches for 59 yards against the Raiders.
After the game Hatten reminded the Bulldogs that they have only been in his new system 18 days and that things will get better.
He also told them they only played a half against both Escambia and Navarre and things might have turned out differently if they had played full games.
The Bulldogs will continue to work in football class until school gets out. They will begin summer workouts in the middle of June.
Randy Dickson is the Crestview News Bulletin’s sports editor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org, tweet him @BigRandle, or call 682-6524.