In a contest that featured seven total lead changes, the Hays Rebels did just enough Friday to outlast the Bowie Bulldogs in a thrilling 35-34 shootout at Bob Shelton Stadium.
It didn’t take long for the fireworks to start as Hays (4-0, 2-0) quarterback Durand Hill took the Rebels down the field on their opening possession and scored a touchdown on a 6-yard option run. Bowie (2-3, 1-2) answered back on the ensuing drive on a 10-yard jet sweep by receiver Jason Gaines; a blocked extra point by Hays kept the Rebels in the lead 7-6.
The offense ramped up in the final two minutes of the first half as four total touchdowns were scored, two by each team. Bowie took a 13-7 lead with 1:49 left on a 22-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Evan Mallett to receiver Jayden York. The Rebels recaptured a 14-13 lead on a 75-yard touchdown pass from Hill to receiver Bryant Lewis.
An interception by Rebel defensive back Justin McMahon on the ensuing Bowie possession gave Hays the ball back. leading to a 34-yard touchdown run by running back JoeAngel Carrasco.
Bowie responded by going down the field and scoring on a 45-yard pass from Mallett to Gaines with 10 seconds left, cutting Hays lead to 21-20 at halftime.
The momentum from the end of the first half carried over into the third quarter as Bowie scored on a 39-yard touchdown catch by Gaines. The Rebels answered back when Hays running back Xavier Green tallied an 80-yard touchdown run on the first play of their next possession.
Late in the third frame, Bowie gained a 34-28 lead on another 22-yard touchdown connection from Mallett to York.
Hays answered the call again as Green pounded his way in on a 4-yard run in the fourth quarter to give the Rebels the 35-34 lead.
With 2:09 left in the game Bowie had one last opportunity to retake the lead, but a fourth down stop by the Rebel defense sealed the victory.