Star City edges Gosnell late

GOSNELL — Star City scored two touchdowns in the fourth quarter Friday to rally past Gosnell 28-23 in the second round of the Class 4A state football playoffs.

The Bulldogs (9-3) trailed 23-14 before Dajunn Harris scored on a 3-yard run with 9:48 left in the game. Star City got the ball back and moved ahead on Tye Brown’s 3-yard touchdown run with 7:31 to play.

Gosnell (9-2) drove to Star City’s 3-yard line on its ensuing possession, but Harris intercepted Dwight Griffin’s fourth-down pass with less than three minutes left in the game.

Star City will visit Dollarway for a quarterfinal game next week, while 3-4A conference champion Gosnell saw its season end along with a nine-game winning streak.

Harris finished with 149 yards on 25 carries after rushing for only 40 yards in the first half. The Bulldogs became the first team to keep Gosnell running back Marcus Mullins out of the end zone, limiting Mullins to 36 yards on 19 carries.

Gosnell struck first on Griffin’s 96-yard touchdown pass to Colton Godsey with 11:45 left in the second quarter. Ricky Gable’s extra point gave the Pirates a 7-0 lead.

Star City answered quickly as Harris took Brown’s short pass 80 yards for a touchdown at the 10:24 mark. Eric Estaban’s PAT tied the score.

Harris’ 4-yard touchdown run put Star City up 14-7 with 3:54 left in the first half, but Gosnell forged a 14-14 halftime tie when Griffin threw a 26-yard touchdown pass to A.J. Jones in the last two minutes.

Gosnell took a 16-14 lead when Jerry Henry tackled Harris in the end zone for a safety with 5:06 left in the third quarter. Griffin’s third touchdown pass, a 16-yard strike to Godsey, gave the Pirates a 23-14 lead with 2:50 to play in the third quarter.

The Pirates finished with just 81 yards rushing as a team. Griffin completed 7-of-16 passes for 204 yards and the one interception, only his fourth of the season.