Three interceptions and a fumble spelled doom for the Copperas Cove High School varsity football team last week.

An experienced defense on the other side of the field didn’t help things.

Copperas Cove High School football coach Jack Welch said he was happy the Bulldawgs play top teams to open the season.

Now the Bulldawgs know what level they have to play to in order to get back into the UIL playoffs.

Four turnovers and some suspect tackling led to a 34-14 loss to A&M Consolidated on the road Sept. 1. The Bulldawgs will have their home opener at 7:30 p.m. today against UANL.

The Bulldawgs were in position to make plays against A&M, but didn’t.

“We have to be able to tackle better,” Welch said. “We were in position to make the plays but we didn’t. That is just inexperience”

Both teams had the first-game jitters and failed to capitalize on mistakes in the first quarter. Andy Riley-Clark intercepted a pass for Cove on the Tigers’ second play, but CCHS was unable to score.

A&M found success late in the first quarter as quarterback Caden Fedora picked the Bulldawgs apart with four consecutive passes that resulted in first downs.

A&M kicker Cade Williams converted a 22-yard field goal for a 3-0 lead early in the second quarter.

The Tigers marched 67 yards for another score on their next possession and took a 17-0 halftime lead on a pass from Fedora to Steven Ray right before halftime.

A&M extended the lead to 24-0 as Charles Williams took the opening kickoff 90 yards for a score.

The Bulldawgs scored midway through the third quarter as Jalen Smith converted on five-of-six passes in a 70-yard drive. Tim Edwards scored from a yard out for Cove’s first score of the year. Antonio Mutt converted on the extra point putting the Bulldawgs behind 24-7.

A&M responded with another field goal by Williams for a 27-7 lead late in the third quarter.

Shontez Simmons scored the final touchdown for Cove on a 5-yard run with under 4 minutes remaining in the game.

Cove held A&M out of the end zone twice in the final seconds of the game from the 1 yard line.

“That says a lot about our kids . . . they don’t quit,” Welch said. “A&M’s defense was very experienced, but it will make us better in the future.

“We play in such a tough district that you have to be ready.”

Smith finished with 121 passing yards for Cove (0-1) in the loss. The Bulldawgs could only muster 51 rushing yards for the game.

jsteers@kdhnews.com | 254-501-7464

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