Warner Robins used three fumbles and a touchdown drive sandwiched between the second and third of those to turn a six-point halftime deficit into a 22-point lead with 2:40 left in the third.
It was far from over.
Coffee answered by scoring three straight touchdowns. The last of those came with less than three minutes left to play, and with the two-point conversion successful, tied the game at 49.
The Demons took the ensuing kickoff on their own 18. They then went 13 plays – converted a third-and-10 and fourth-and-12 along the way – finally getting it close enough for Eli Mashburn to kick the game-winning 36-yard field for the 52-49 win.
The two began the game with a punt. On Coffee’s second attempt, it picked up two first downs but still had to punt.
Warner Robins took over on its own 15 and on the second play from scrimmage, Jarquavious Jefferson picked off quarterback Dylan Fromm for a 20-yard pick-six. The point after was no good.
The Demons answered that with a 65-yard drive – converting a fourth-and-one once they got close – in answer. It was finished off by Jaeven West’s 10-yard run. Mashburn made it 7-6.
The visitor answered that with an 80-yard drive. It was aided by a 15-yard penalty on a late hit to start, but still covered 11 plays. The last was a one-yard run by Jameon Gaskin. Jose Rodriguez made it 13-7. The game was into the second quarter by then.
Warner Robins started on their own 18 again following. On the fifth play from scrimmage, Fromm found Julius Cobbs for a little screen pass. It was about eight yards deep but Cobbs turned it into an 88-yard score. Mashburn made it 14-13.
With the two apparently now in back-and-forth mode, the Trojans took their turn. They took the ball on the 24, ran 10 plays – including a fourth-and-five conversion – and scored. The touchdown came via Gaskin’s second touchdown run – this one from 12 yards out. The PAT made it 20-14.
Following the second Demons interception, Coffee scored again. This time it was via a 50-yard pass from Sumner to Dalrone Donaldson.
Warner Robins then put together a 70-yard drive of seven plays, taken into the endzone by Jarius Burnette from the 1. The point after made it 27-21, which is where it stood at the half.
The first of those fumbles to start the third was recovered on the 20. A flag on the first play from scrimmage pushed it back 10, but didn’t keep Fromm from finding Cobbs on the second play for the score. The point after made it 28-27, Demons.
The second fumble was recovered on the 5 and was turned into a five-yard pass – on third down, however – from Fromm to his brother, Tyler. The PAT made it 35-27.
Coffee County punted following. Warner Robins took it on the 28 and went 10 plays for the score – West getting the call again, this time from the 3. Mashburn made it 42-27.
Then came the third fumble, another short field and another Demons score. Fromm got his number called on this one and with Mashburn’s help made it 49-27.
Then came the aforementioned back-to-back-to-back scores from the Trojans. The first was a pass and another touchdown for Donaldson. The second – the game moving into the fourth quarter – was a three-yard run and another score for Gaskin. It was a drive that took less than a minute and went 62 yards.
Head Coach Mike Chastain said going in: “People don’t run the ball on them. That seems to be our luck right now. We’re playing teams that people don’t seem to be able to run the ball against them.”
West certainly proved up to the task when it counted – seemingly when the Demons needed it most – but still it was difficult. Especially when with just over eight minutes left to play, and still holding that slim 49-41 lead, Warner Robins would have loved nothing more than to eat some time off that clock.
Instead – despite picking up two first downs – they had to turn it back over to Coffee.
They did so with 5:44 remaining. The Trojans took it on their own 17, ran 11 plays and scored when Sumner found Donaldson from 19 yards out.
That in turn set up the thrilling finish – shades of Peach County and Mashburn’s game-winner there.
With the win, the Demons remained undefeated. They are now 6-0. Coffee lost its second-straight heartbreaker and fell to 3-2.