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Rebels boot Knights with field goals
Thomas kicks game-winner with 48 seconds left
Effingham County's Zach Thomas (96) watches his game-winning 34-yard field goal sail through the uprights with 48 seconds left Friday night. He booted it out of the hold of Julian Thrift. - photo by Mark Lastinger/staff

Effingham County at Evans football

Efingham County 9, Evans 6 on Aug. 17, 2018.
By: Mark Lastinger

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He's clutch, just clutch
Rebels coach Buddy Holder
EVANS -- A dialed-in kicker found the winning frequency for the Effingham County Rebels on Friday. Zach Thomas booted three field goals, including a 34-yarder with 48 seconds left, to send the Rebels to a 9-6 victory in their season opener. The winning kick came with a defender around Thomas' ankles. "He's clutch, just clutch," Effingham County coach Buddy Holder said. "He really drove all the field goals (through the goal posts). It was pretty." Thomas' heroic final kick was set up by a bold coaching decision with 2:03 remaining. Facing fourth-and-1 at his team's 36, Holder decided to go for a first down. "The guys on the sideline felt it," Holder said. "They said, 'We got them! We got them! We think we've got a play.'" The play featured a bit of misdirection in the backfield. After taking the handoff, Ashaud Roberson scurried 43 yards to the Evans 21. "I almost talked myself out of it," Holder said. "It's one of those things that worked out right so we look good. It could have gone the other way and I would have looked like a fool. "The kids made it work right." Three plays after Roberson's long run, Thomas delivered the winning kick. The game was the first for Holder as a head coach against his alma mater. Many of his classmates were in the stands celebrating their 30-year reunion. See the Aug. 22 edition of the Effingham Herald for more details.