Valley Rams clinch playoff berth with dominant homecoming win

Published 12:17 am Saturday, October 14, 2023

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The Valley Rams are heading back to the 5A playoffs, and they clinched in style by rolling over Tallassee 48-14 on Friday night.

The Rams scored three touchdowns on their first eight plays of the game, putting the Tigers away early in a homecoming rout.

By halftime, the biggest reason to stick around was for fans to see alumni participate in the halftime show with the Rams marching band.

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“After you take a loss like we did last week, you’ve got to really regroup, and you’ve got to really focus,” said Valley Head Coach Adam Hunter, referring to last week’s 47-0 defeat to Central Clay County. “I’m proud of all of our kids. This isn’t just the starters who won this game. It’s all of our kids.”

It was a huge night for Tilyn Carrell, who had room to run all night. He nearly broke the opening play for a touchdown, but he got tackled in the red zone. On the next play, Cam’ron Dooley hit CJ Chambley for a touchdown to put the Rams up 7-0 just 35 seconds into the game.

Tallassee fumbled on its second play from scrimmage, and Carter Chambley recovered. On the next play, Dooley hit Brandon Thomas for a 25-yard touchdown pass, making the score 14-0 Rams with 10:40 left in the first quarter.

Tallassee’s next possession was one of the Tigers best of the first half, as they converted several first downs before being forced to punt.

Valley took five plays to score on its next drive, but Carrell got the call, zig-zagging out of traffic and running it in for a touchdown that made it 21-0 with 4:50 left in the first quarter.

“Tylin ran the ball well, and we blocked well up front. That kid has got so much better than where he was last year,” Hunter said. “That’s a testament to our guys up front and to Tylin. We’ve gotten better up front every week.”

Even when Tallassee got a break, it didn’t work out in the Tigers favor.

After punting on their next drive, the Tallassee defense intercepted Dooley on a deflected pass. However, the defender, Cortland Roberts, fumbled after the interception and the Rams recovered.

On the very next play, Carrell ran 43 yards for a touchdown to make it 27-0. The Rams failed on a two-point try.

The second quarter was more of the same. Tallassee drove deep into Valley territory at one point, but Ian Crim-Davis intercepted a pass in the end zone to end the threat.

Dooley went right end for a touchdown where he was untouched, making it 34-0 Rams.

Tallassee responded with its first points on a wide-open touchdown pass from Mason Battles to Chase Chumbley. That made it 34-7.

Again, as was the case all night, Valley immediately answered when it got the ball back. Dooley went 48 yards around right end on the first play for a touchdown to make it 41-7 Valley with 39.7 seconds left in the second quarter.

Both teams scored one touchdown in the second half, with Carrell adding Valley’s score.

The clock ran the entire second half due to Valley’s big lead.

The win clinched a playoff berth for Valley, but the Rams are still fighting for positioning in region 4. The Rams play at Elmore County next week.