CLINTWOOD — Twelfth-seeded J.I. Burton used a strong defense and timely plays to pull off a 16-14 upset of No. 5 Clintwood on Saturday in the first round of the VHSL 1A West Region football playoffs.
Burton’s defense allowed only 44 rushing yards and forced four turnovers by the Greenwave (8-3).
“The big picture is where we were at in August and where we are at right now,” said Raiders coach Jimbo Adams. “We were 1-3 and people had left us for dead.”
Second-half touchdown runs by Drake Bowen and Tyler Justiniano staked the Raiders (7-4) to a 16-7 lead with 1:45 remaining in the game.
But 34 seconds later, Clintwood’s Dalton Dahley found a streaking Nate Mullins for a 31-yard touchdown that pulled the ‘Wave within two points, 16-14, on the extra point.
After a failed onside kick and use of timeouts, Clintwood managed to get the ball back with 21 seconds to go but couldn’t complete the comeback.
Burton advanced to host No. 13 seed Auburn, which upset No. 4 Chilhowie 35-19 on Friday night, in the second round next week at Virginia-Wise.
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