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Postgame Recap | Hoover dominates McGill-Toolen for 7A State Title

Brant Berry | PrepsNet

Tuscaloosa, AL – The Hoover Bucs dismantled the McGill-Toolen Yellow Jackets 48-20 Wednesday night in Tuscaloosa’s Bryant-Denny stadium to claim their second straight 7A state title.  This Super 7 clash was a rematch of last year’s 7A final.  In 2016 Josh Niblett’s Bucs got the best of the Jackets 17-7.  

The victory marked Hoover’s 13th AHSAA state football crown and is the program’s fourth in five years.  

Hoover lit up the Bryant-Denny scoreboard first, six minutes into the game, as running back Larry McCammon capped an eight play, 71 yard drive with 16 yard touchdown scamper.  The Yellow Jackets got on the board with less than an minute remaining in the first after McGill’s Keeton Wells recovered a George Pickens fumble deep in Buccaneer territory.  The recovery set up 28 yard Chase Mahler field goal and pulled the Jackets within four points as time expired in the opening quarter. 

With less than a minute off the clock in the second, championship game MVP Jalen Parker tossed the first of his four touchdown passes, this one to George Pickens from just inside the 10 yard line putting the defending champs up 14-3.  

Follwing the Bucs second score, McGill put together their most impressive drive of the contest traveling 73 yards in 16 plays and ending in Mahler’s second fieldgoal, this one from 24 yards out.  The one score differential wouldn’t last long, however as Parker connected with Shedrick Jackson for a 70 yard score on the Bucs next play.  Nebraska commit Barrett Pickering’s third extra point put the Bucs up 21-6 with four minutes remaining before the break.  

After Greg Russell scooped up a Yellow Jacket fumble, Vonte Brackett capped three straight rushes with a four yard touchdown bolt giving the Bucs a three score lead, 28-6.   Pickens hauled in his second Jalen Parker touchdown two minutes later, this one from just beyond the midfield stripe.  The Auburn commit finished the night two receptions, both for touchdowns.

Shedric Jackson capped a three play 41 yard Buccaneer drive with a 16 yard touchdown grab from Parker late in the third.  The Parker to Jackson TD was the only score of a mostly uneventful third quarter.  

Hoover lead 41-6 with one frame remaining. 

After a turnover on downs by the Jackets, Jacques Allen capped the Bucs opening drive of the fourth, this one spanning 54 yards in just six plays, with a nine yard touchdown run.  Pickering’s point after put Hoover up 48-6 with just under 10 minutes to play.  

A fumble recovery by McGill’s Carson McClain started a fourth quarter Yellow Jacket rally.  Kahlil Nettles gave McGill their first touchdown of the night rushing in from the 14 and cashing in on a drive that started at the Hoover 32.  

Hoover’s Noah Williams returned a botched onside kick attempt 47 yards putting the Buccaneer offense in business at the Yellow Jacket five yard line with 6:00 minutes remaining in the contest.  The Bucs were unable to cash in on the outstanding field position following a five yard penalty and a flurry of negative plays.  

Taking over at their own 25, down 48-13, with just over three minutes remaining, Earnest Hill’s Jackets gave the McGill-Toolen faithful something to look forward to next se7ason.  Quarterback Sheldon Laymon popped a 75 yard touchdown bomb to Turner McLaughlin.   Mahler’s PAT put a bow on the opening game of the 2017 Super 7 with the Hoover Bucs cruising to victory 48-20. 

Hoover quarterback Jalen Parker finished the night with 265 yards through the air, completing 11 of 15 passes and tossing four touchdowns in route to the AHSAA 7A Most Valuable Player award.   

Larry McCammon paced the Bucs on the ground rushing for 106 yards on 13 carries and a touchdown.  Vonte Bracket and Jacquez Allen also scored TD’s on the ground. 

Shedric Jackson lead Hoover receiving corps with six grabs for 160 yards and two scores.  George Pickens hauled in two passes for 61 yards and a pair of touchdowns.