The Cartersville Purple Hurricanes (5-1, 0-1) fell to the Calhoun Yellow Jackets on Thursday night by a score of 50-48

The Canes had five turnovers in the game, an unusual number for a team that has traditionally held onto the football. Cartersville committed its first turnover on the opening kickoff as Calhoun punched the ball free and took possession in the red zone. The Cartersville defense held strong and left Calhoun stranded on the 8-yard line after failing a fourth down conversion. After gaining 10 yards, Cartersville committed its second turnover, an interception. This time Calhoun would convert the free possession into points.

After both teams punted, Cartersville took over on the 47-yard line. It took Malachi Jeffries just one play to take the football into the endzone to tie the game at seven apiece. Calhoun’s offense showed that it could sustain a long drive and was able to answer the Cartersville score. Then the turnover monster hit the Canes again.

On the first play after the kickoff following Calhoun’s score, the ball was punched free from Jeffries’ hands. The Yellow Jackets were able to jump on the loose football and the offense would score just a few plays later. On the following drive, Cartersville would throw its second interception and Calhoun would take over at the Cartersville 42-yard line. One pass play later, the Yellow Jackets would hold a 28-7 lead over the home team.

Cartersville knew it would have to stop the bleeding and was able to do so. A long, sustained drive that ended with a Jeffries 21-yard touchdown run would make the score 28-14, where it would stand going into the half.

In the third quarter, Cartersville would get its first Calhoun turnover and in Yellow Jacket territory. Unfortunately, the Canes would give the ball right back as Calhoun intercepted a pass in the back of the endzone to thwart the Cartersville drive.

Cartersville’s defense continued to rise to the challenge. Calhoun had trouble moving forward in its next drives and was forced to punt. The Cartersville offense, which had struggled up to this point, was now getting the ball in favorable field position.

Jeffries would cap off one drive with a 4-yard touchdown run as Paul Gamble would connect with Collin Fletcher on another to tie the game at 28. With just over five minutes left in the game, Cartersville had scored 21-unanswered points to tie the game. Calhoun had a chance to chew some clock and set up for a late score, but the Cartersville defense, once again, would have none of it.

The Cartersville defense needed just one more march to seal the victory. Cartersville, facing a fourth-and-2 at the Calhoun 25-yard line with 1:03 left on the clock, elected to kick a 42-yard field goal to take a late lead. Unfortunately, Ryan Johnson’s kick sailed wide right and the thrilling game was destined for overtime.

Calhoun would score on its first play from scrimmage to grab the lead. Cartersville lost 10 yards on a holding penalty, but Gamble would connect with Jake Brasfield for a 16-yard touchdown to knot the game up at 35. The Canes would also strike first in the second session of overtime as Gamble would connect with Jamauri Brice. It was Calhoun’s time to answer. The Yellow Jackets would convert a fourth-and-three to tie Cartersville at 42.

At the start of the third overtime session, both teams would need to attempt 2-point conversions. Calhoun would score and convert on its attempt. Cartersville would find the end zone on Jeffries fourth touchdown run, but a read-option play would fall short as Gamble was tackled before breaking the plane, as Cartersville would fall 50-48.

Cartersville will take a short trip to Cass High School next Friday night at 7:30 PM as the Canes search for their first region win of the season. You can hear the action on WBHF with pregame coverage beginning at 6:00 PM.