10:08: It’s over. Nick Monmouth makes a shoe string stop at midfield, and the Hornets hold on to top Royal, 29-26. They are on their way to face Coldspring, 7:30 p.m. Friday, at Bower Stadium.
10:00: Athens just dodged the mysterious bullet, a fourth-down pass that tipped off two defenders and out of the hands of Royal’s Chris Taylor. The Hornets take over at the Royal 49 as the clock ticks. 4Q, 2:15, Hornets 29, Royal 26
9:48: Desmond Bowie made a great-leaping grab to keep Athens’ current drive alive. One play later, Nick Monmouth carried for 16 yards. One play later, Tevin Watson to Courtney Whitehead for 26. Then, Juwaun Martin covered the final 3, and Athens leads again. Watson scrambled for the two-point conversion. 4Q, 5:47, Hornets 29, Royal 26
9:42: Third and long hasn’t been an issue for Royal. On third and 11, Tevin Long just hit Demetrius Jacobs for 56 yards and a TD, as Nick Monmouth went for the pick at the 39. Royal converted a two-point conversion after a lengthy scramble, but it was wiped out because of an illegal man downfield call. On the second attempt, Xavier Harris dropped Long. 4Q, 7:49, Royal 26, Hornets 21
9:34: The Hornets finally get a break. After a Tevin Long scramble, he fumbled, and Dillon Holcomb recovered at the Royal 21. Tevin Watson then hit Courtney Whitehead, and a horse caller was called. On the next play, Nick Monmouth scored from 4 yards out, his third TD of the night. Zabdiel Mota nailed the PAT, his 84th straight. 4Q, 10:30, Hornets 21, Royal 20
9:27: Royal tried an onside kick, but Athens covered at the Hornets 47. It took two plays to get back in this game. Tevin Watson found Courtney Whitehead for 28 yards, then Nick Monmouth scored from 21 yards out. Zabdiel Mota’s PAT makes it 20-14. Mota, meanwhile, is one PAT away from tying for fifth place in the state in consecutive makes (now 83 in a row dating back to last year). 3Q, :01, Royal 20, Hornets 14