The Hilltoppers (10-1) answered swiftly. Trey Alercio connected with Austin Fenoff and Hudson for 28-yard passing plays, the latter for the TD and a 13-7 halftime deficit.
Out of the break, BBA went 92 yards in six plays, capped by Joey McCoy finding Jack Morrison, who spun out of an arm tackle for a 23-yard TD.
In control and with momentum, BBA opened its playbook.
A Morgan interception on SJA's next play set up the Bulldogs inside the SJA 40.
The Hilltoppers nearly held, too, but McCoy converted a fake punt on fourth-and-10 by hitting Morgan on a 20-yard rollout to extend the drive. “We noticed it was open and Joey’s the punter, he’s the quarterback, and Logan’s the up-back, he’s the receiver — we thought it was a good time and it just so happens it worked out pretty well for us,” Tom McCoy said. “There was a lot of reasons things went well today but I think that was a good boost for us, to convert on that punt fake, for sure.”
One play later, Joey McCoy took it himself, powering in from 25 yards out for a 27-7 margin 1:06 into the third.
"To gain that right back, that’s the key to winning and in tough games, you have to take those chances, you have to take those risks and that paid off when we scored a touchdown right after that," the BBA quarterback said.
SJA drew to 27-14 when Alercio threw into the flat for Nick Guckin, who broke several tackles for a 39-yard score. But BBA answered on its ensuing play on Morgan's second 86-yarder.
Morgan broke four tackles as he slalomed into the end zone, nearly out of breath.
"I was gassed at the 10-yard line, but I knew I had to get it and just kept going and going," Morgan said.
Morgan also turned another McCoy bomb into 51-yard TD reception for a 40-20 lead at 7:48 of the fourth — after Alercio had rushed for a 1-yard score just 13 seconds prior — and then completed the night's scoring on his 19-yard scoring scramble.
As BBA's offense hit another gear, the defense stymied SJA's own uptempo attack. The Bulldogs recorded five sacks and limited SJA to just 53 rushing yards (364 total), a complete turnaround from the 50-38 Hilltoppers' triumph in the Week 6 showdown in Manchester.
SJA's David Hutchison, who had six TDs in the first matchup, was held in check.
"I would say they did a good job of stacking the box when Hutchison was in the backfield and they did good job of putting (Joey) McCoy on him in coverage. They did a good job of taking away the one guy that beat them," Rich Alercio said. "We had some favorable matchups in the first game that we just didn’t have in this game."
BBA's path to Saturday was a new one for the program. But the journey made believers out of Morgan and McCoy.
"In August when we first started practicing, I didn’t know what was going to happen," Morgan said. "I knew we were a good team, but I didn’t think we were this good. I really didn’t."
McCoy: "Through all the ups and downs and all the obstacles ... to come out and finish it like this, it’s truly amazing. It’s something I’ll never forget."
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Contact Alex Abrami at 660-1848 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @aabrami5.