Bruins claw their way to victory

Saturday, September 4, 2004 | 12:00 a.m. CDT; updated 6:49 a.m. CDT, Thursday, July 17, 2008

The spotlight was shining squarely on the shoulders of Rock Bridge quarterback Logan Gray on Friday, and he knew it.

The sophomore admitted he was a little nervous in his first game as a starter in the Bruins' season opener at Cecil Naylor Field in Marshall. Gray threw two interceptions in the first half. The butterflies eventually left, and Gray threw the only touchdown of the evening late in the game. The Bruins won, 7-0.

“I was a little shaky at first,” Gray said, “but I just tried to cool down in the second half and let things come.”

Senior tight end Demond Thorpe, who played as a wide receiver last season, caught the five-yard pass from Gray with 9:11 remaining in the fourth quarter.

“I just put it up and let him make the play on it,” Gray said. “He made a great play.”

“We just didn’t want to go home with a loss,” Thorpe said. “We wanted to get the first win out of our system, get all the jitters out and everything.”

After Thorpe’s touchdown catch, Marshall junior D.W. Bradshaw returned the kick to the Rock Bridge 40-yard line. The Owls pushed their way to the 27, where a fumble recovered by the Bruins sealed the victory.

Rock Bridge used sophomore running back Scott Concannon to run the remaining minutes off the clock.

“He is a model for what we need on this team,” said Bruins’ coach A.J. Ofodile. “In a game like this when we had so many mistakes, we needed a reliable person, so we went to him, we put the ball in his hands, we let him continue to be reliable in the game for us. That was big time for us, and he’s a model for his teammates because of that.”

Concannon said he was glad he could help his team, but he said he thinks that his offense line deserves credit as well.

“It’s more of a team performance,” Concannon said. “If not for the line or my blocking, then I wouldn’t have had those yards and the clock wouldn’t have been running like that.”

After what Ofodile called a shaky first half, the team stepped it up enough in the second half to earn the victory.

“I think it kind of turned into a blood and guts, scratch, claw, whatever-you-can-do-to-win kind of game,” said Ofodile. “I think our guys started having the right kind of respect for Marshall down the stretch, and I think that was the key.”

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