Borders Leads Macon Over DeKalb County In Region Battle

Story and Photos by Rusty Ellis

The Macon County Tigers got a big game from Gabe Borders to take down DeKalb County 21-13 in Smithville on Thursday.

The Tigers set the tone for the game from the jump, as their opening drive took 10:46 off the clock and ended in a touchdown on a quarterback sneak from Kyle Shockley.

DeKalb County answered the score in the second quarter, as Briz Trapp found Malachi Trapp in the corner of the end zone on a beautiful back-shoulder throw to knot the score at 7-apiece.

DCHS had one more opportunity to score right before half, as Holden Trapp appeared to get out of bounds with a little over two seconds remaining. Officials let the game clock run however, and the game went to the halftime break tied at 7.

The host Tigers took the lead on their opening drive of the third quarter, as Trapp lofted a pass to Josh May for the go-ahead score. With 7:48 remaining in the third quarter, DeKalb held a 13-7 advantage after a missed PAT.

Macon took the lead right back however, as Borders scored on a 50-yard rushing touchdown the following possession. The extra point gave the Tigers a 14-13 lead.

Near the end of the third quarter is where the game took a drastic turn, as Trapp was sacked on a play that appeared to injure his shoulder. This forced him to miss the rest of the game, as backup Jordan Parker entered in his place.

Parker proceeded to throw an interception on one of his first passing attempts, as Borders picked him off to give Macon possession with just under five minutes to play in the game.

While obviously not the result he wanted, DeKalb head coach Steve Trapp was aware of just how difficult a situation is was that Parker stepped into.

“If he throws that three more feet, it’s a big play for us,” Trapp said. “Coming off the sideline is part of it, and he’s going to have to grow up real fast. He’s got a good head…JP’s got to step up, and we’ll continue to fight.”

Macon took advantage of the turnover, as Borders added another touchdown to his night to push the lead to its final margin at 21-13, leading to a big region win for the Tigers and head coach Kyle Shoulders.

“Coming into this week, we had tons of distractions and tons of guys battling injuries,” Shoulders said. “To call on some guys who hadn’t had many reps and them perform the way they did, it’s exceptional…this bunch is a group of fighters.”

Borders’ big night was the leading force in the win for Macon County, but Shoulders is quick to point out that both he and his sophomore star are both more pleased with the overall team performance.

“What’s so amazing is what Gabe does as far as getting others open,” Shoulders said. “Everyone’s so focused on Gabe, we’ll use him as a decoy a little bit…I just love that the team won. That’s special for us. I’m proud for him and proud for our team tonight. For us to be able to continue to compete, it speaks volumes for our program and where we’re taking it.”

As far as DeKalb is concerned, Trapp minced no words about how he expects his team to respond to this adversity.

“It’s gut-check time,” Trapp said. “Our mental effort has got to match our physical effort. We’ll see how big of a football family they are and how they’ll lift each other up…these guys have got to step up, and we’ll continue to fight.”

Macon County will battle at Trousdale County next week, while DeKalb County will take on Watertown at home.