By MADISON BROWDER | Photos by KINDELL BUCHANAN
Summit’s historic football season came to an end Friday night with a 21-16 loss at home against Beech in a Class 5A quarterfinal.
The trip to the third round was another notch for a program that won its first region title and first playoff game this season.
“We didn’t want to celebrate all that stuff before because we wanted to move forward, but this group has done a lot this year,” Summit head coach Brian Coleman said. “A lot of school firsts, a lot of things in our history. They just fought all year long. This was a good game, fun game, and we fought till the end. That’s all we can ask for out of these guys.”
Beech (13-0) will host Brighton (6-4) in the semifinals on Nov. 24.
Summit struggled on offense early, creating a 14-0 hole it was unable to escape.
Running back George Odimegwu shouldered the load for the Spartans, rushing for 155 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries.
He finished his sophomore campaign with 1435 rushing yards, 192 receiving yards and 17 total touchdowns.
“He played well tonight,” Coleman said. “He didn’t play like a sophomore. The stage wasn’t too big for him. [Sophomore quarterback] Ethan Cash also did a great job for us tonight and we get both of them back, so the future looks bright for us.”
Buccaneers running back Kaemon Dunlap scored on two short touchdown runs in the first 15 minutes.
Odimegwu cut Summit’s deficit to 14-7 with an 11-yard touchdown run midway through the second quarter.
Summit kicker Quinn Slaugenhoupt added a 35-yard field goal late in the frame to send the Spartans into halftime trailing 14-10.
Dunlap added a 32-yard touchdown run with just under seven minutes left in the third quarter for a 21-10 advantage.
Summit running back Payton Craig scored on a 1-yard run with 3:49 remaining in the game, but a failed two-point conversion left the Spartans trailing by five.
They had a final opportunity with two minutes to play at their own 25-yard line, but they turned it over on downs after failing to connect on any of their passing attempts.
“We had a couple little mishaps there, but defense played great and kept us in the game,” Coleman said.
Summit finished the season with a 10-3 record.