DECATUR -- In their first meeting since the expansion of the eight-man football league in early May, the Marshall Bobcats traveled to Decatur to take on the Bulldogs in Decatur's first home varsity game of the 2020 season. It was an action-packed night for fans on both sides of the bleachers as the contest netted a total of 94 points by the end of the 48-minute contest. But in the end, a pair of touchdowns late in the fourth quarter gave the Bobcats the game by 12.
The contest remained scoreless for the first seven and half minutes. Then, with 4:25 left in the quarter, a pitchout from Bobcat quarterback Hunter House to DaGyn Williams at the Decatur 6-yard line crossed the goal line for the first touchdown of the night. A quarterback keeper by Hunter resulted in a two-point conversion, giving Marshall the first lead of the game, 8-0.
On Marshall's next series, the Bobcats began a march down the field for what looked like their second touchdown. But Decatur's Bryson Funk had other ideas as he intercepted Hunter's pass to Caleb Barnes near the Decatur 10-yard line, resulting in a 45 yard run by Funk. Unfortunately, the Bulldogs were unable to utilize the possession and Marshall's lead remained.
Toward the end of the first quarter, Funk was able to connect with one of his running backs for the first six points of the night for the Bulldogs. Decatur's conversion attempt failed, enabling Marshall to hold on to a slim two-point lead.
Shortly after the start of the second quarter, Williams found the end zone for both a touchdown and conversion, boosting the Bobcats score to 16-6.
At the 7:27 mark, Funk found a hole at the Marshall 20-yard line and scrambled in for the Bulldogs' second touchdown. A quick pass from Funk to wide receiver Zac Luker resulted in a successful two-point conversion, bringing Decatur back to within two points of the Bobcats, 16-14.
A short time later, Funk found one of his running backs for the Bulldogs' go-ahead touchdown. The conversion failed to cross the goal line, giving the Bulldogs their first lead of the night, 20-16.
With a little over four minutes left in the first half, the Bobcats marched the ball downfield to the 2-yard line. Hunter handed off to Williams who stumbled over a crowd of players for the touchdown and regain the lead by two. Hunter was able to move the ball into the end zone for the conversion, making it a 24-20 contest going into the halftime break.
Shortly after the start of the third quarter, Hunter handed off to Williams. William broke several Bulldog tackles, finding the corner of the goal line for his fourth touchdown for the night. The conversion was good, extending Marshall's lead to 14.
Not to be outdone, Funk found a running back near the 10-yard line and took the ball into the end zone to move the Bulldogs to within six. On the next Decatur possession, Funk, on a quarterback keeper, ran the ball into the end zone to tie the score at 32 all.
Marshall broke the tie on its next possession with a pass from Hunter to Colton Sutterfield. The conversion was good, putting the Bobcats out in front by eight.
Decatur answered on the next play with another Funk run into the end zone for his third touchdown of the night. He also ran the conversion into the end zone, tying the game at 40 all.
With less than two minutes left in the game, Marshall was able to make two back-to-back touchdowns and conversions and take the lead for good. In a game that yielded 94 total points, the Marshall Bobcats claimed the victory over the Decatur Bulldogs, 54-40.