With the tailgaters present and the smell of grilled chicken, hamburgers and hotdogs thick in the October air, the scene at Gene Cox Stadium was ready for a rare Saturday night football game between Rickards and FAMU High.
Billed appropriately as the “Southside Showdown”, the Rickards Homecoming festivities began in high-stepping fashion as the Raider band marched the short distance from Rickard’s high school to Gene Cox Stadium.
However, a homecoming victory wasn’t in the cards for the Rickards faithful as the FAMU High Baby Rattlers (7-0) continued their remarkable streak this season adding yet another victory, a 21-7 win to beat the slumping Raiders on Saturday night to remain undefeated on the year.
The Baby Rattlers easily sliced through the Raider defense and scored on their first two drives of the game. (#1) Derrick Austin opened the scoring with 1 yard run and followed up with 22 yard pass reception to give FAMU High a 14-0 lead.
Both defenses would stiffen up as neither defense surrendered a point in the second and third quarters.
The Baby Rattlers salted the game away with just over three minutes left in the fourth quarter on a 35 yard touchdown pass from Baby Rattler quarterback (#9) Ja’Varius Jones to (#2) Hubert Campbell which stretch the FAMU High lead to 21-0.
The FAMU High defense managed to pitch a shutout until the 1:48 mark in the fourth quarter. Wide-out (#1) Jalen Ashby broke into the end zone on an option from inside the Baby Rattlers 10 yard line for the Raiders lone score of the night.
The Raiders offense was only able to convert on one of three trips inside the red zone with FAMU High’s defense turning them away on fourth down twice.
FAMU High (7-0) faces Port St. Joe next Friday at Bragg Memorial Stadium, while Rickards (0-6, 0-1) takes on the district front runner Godby at Gene Cox Stadium.