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  School Football over the past 100 seasons.

Amazing Seasons 

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           The 1982 Hazlewood Golden Bears began fall football practice with the hope of repeating their 1981 state championship. The previous season, the Bears finished 13-1 tying the most wins in school history.

           But this year was different. For one, the Bears moved from Class 1A to 2A. The schedule would be more difficult and the playoff competition tougher to navigate. If they wished to repeat it would take a special season. The Bears dressed out 35 players for the opening game but many of those were young and inexperienced.

  Courtland             6  
  Hazlewood             21  

          Hazlewood opened the season on Aug. 27, against their rival, Courtland. The Chiefs were no match for the Bears and lost 21-6 in Town Creek.

  Hazlewood 0   7   13   12   32  
  New Hope 0   0   7   0   7  

           The Bears went on the road to face a good New Hope team the following week. Behind the running of Kerry Goode, the Bears were able to move the ball almost seemingly at will. They rushed for 274 yards in the game and controlled it from the start.

           After a scoreless first quarter, the Bears exploded in the second. Ross King scored the first touchdown on a 39-yard run to give Hazlewood a 7-0 lead with 4:23 left in the half. New Hope scored on the first play of the second half on a 71-yard run by Rodney Heatheron.

           The Bears quickly answered on a one-yard run by Goode and after the extra point was blocked they led 14-7 with 4:14 left in the third. Following a New Hope fumble, quarterback Joseph Langham found Goode on a 37-yard touchdown pass on the first play after the recovery. As the third quarter ended, the Bears led 20-7.

           Goode was not done for the evening as he returned an interception 74 yards for a score and raced 42 yards on a punt return for another touchdown. Hazlewood left New Hope with a 2-0 record and a 32-7 victory.

  Hazlewood 0   14   7   7   28  
  Cherokee 0   0   0   8   8  

           The next week, Hazlewood traveled to play the Cherokee Indians. The Bears rolled to a 28-8 win on big plays and the running of Lee Garner. Garner rushed for 115 yards on only eight carries to led the offense. After a scoreless first quarter, the Bears got on the scoreboard on a 60-yard touchdown run by Garner and led 7-0 with 1:15 left in the half.

           Hazlewood scored again just minutes later when noseguard intercepted a pitchout and rumbled 65 yards for a score and Hazlewood led 14-0 at the half. Goode finished off a drive with a one-yard run in the third then raced 91 yards on a punt return for the final points of the night. Cherokee scored with just 14 second remaining in the game to make the final score 28-8.

  Hazlewood 7   7   7   7   28  
  Parrish 0   7   7   0   14  

           In week four, the Bears defeated Parrish 28-14 on the road for their fourth win of the season. Although the win was great it came with a price. Quarterback Joseph Langham and star running back Kerry Goode were lost to injuries. Goode opened the scoring on a 32-yard run and ran six yards for another score just before the end of the first half.

           Parrish scored just before the half and returned the second half kickoff 99 yards to cut the lead to 14-13. Backup quarterback Chris Carpenter threw a touchdown pass and Tony O'Cowley scored on a 56-yard run to cap off the scoring for Hazlewood and secure the victory.

  Red Bay 0   7   0   0   7  
  Hazlewood 7   14   20   6   47  

           Next up were the Red Bay Tigers. Even without their two star players on offense, Hazlewood rolled up 307 yards rushing and another 92 through the air in demolishing the Tigers 47-7. Marcus Allen scored on a 17-yard fumble return to give the Bears a 21-7 halftime lead.

           Hazlewood came back in the second half to score 26 unanswered points. The defense intercepted three passes, recovered two fumbles and blocked a punt.

  Stevenson 0   7   0   12   19  
  Hazlewood 0   14     7   6   27  

           The Golden Bears hosted the Stevenson Panthers in week six. The Panthers entered the game with a 5-0 record and had lost to Dadeville 3-0 in the Class 2A state championship game the previous season. Stevenson was ranked No. 1 in the ASWA polls while the Bears were ranked second.

           Hazlewood rushed for 315 yards and threw for another 70 yards in a 27-19 victory for their 16th consecutive win. Joseph Langham came off the bench to toss a 47-yard touchdown pass to Lee Ester Garner and a 7-0 lead. Stevenson scored after a blocked punt late in the second quarter to tie the score.

           The Bears came back when Randal Blaxton raced 57 yards for a touchdown as they took a 14-7 lead into the half. Stevenson blocked a second punt and recovered at the 22-yard line early in the third but did not score. Hazlewood drove forty yards for their next touchdown on a 10-yard run by Ross King and a 21-7 lead.

           Stevenson came back with a long touchdown drive before the Bears marched 60 yards to take a 27-13 lead with less than two minutes left. Stevenson scored late but the Bears won 29-19 in a battle of top ranked teams.

  Hazlewood 13   7   7   6   33  
  Hatton 0   0   6   0   6  

           Hazlewood took over the number one ranking in the Class 2A polls following their big win over Stevenson. The Bears traveled to take on the Hatton Hornets in week seven. They came away with a 33-6 win in spite of 160 yards in penalties during the game.

           The Hornets outgained the Bears 202-192 but turnovers proved to be the difference in the game. Hatton lost two fumbles and threw four interceptions. Hazlewood built a 19-0 halftime lead and scored twice more in the second half.

  Lexington 0   0   7   16   23  
  Hazlewood 14   7   7   7   35  

           Following an open date, the Hazlewood Bears were playing back in Leighton against the unbeaten Lexington Bears. The game was for the area championship and a playoff spot. The Bears of Hazlewood opened up a 28-0 lead before holding on for a 35-23 victory.

           Kerry Goode was healthy again and scored on runs of 66 and 42 yards. Garner added a 65-yard touchdown run and Langham threw a 84-yard touchdown pass to Blaxton. Hazlewood rolled up 357 yards rushing and 441 total yards.

  Hazlewood 6   14   8   13   41  
  Sparkman 0   7   0   6   13  

           The Hazlewood Golden Bears finished the regular season with a perfect 9-0 record after running over Sparkman 41-13. The Bears rushed for 317 yards and passed for another 142 yards in the win. They took an early 20-0 lead and coasted to another win.

Hazlewood High School

  Hazlewood 12   22   0   10   44  
  Ardmore 0   6   0   0   6  

           The Ardmore Tigers visited Hazlewood High School Stadium for the first round of the playoffs and left on the short end of a 44-6 score. The Bears gained 348 yards despite the fact that Kerry Kerry Goode and Lee Estes Garner did not play in the game.

           As it turned out the pair were not needed. Freshman Pierre Goode returned the opening kickoff 88 yards for a quick touchdown. Following an Ardmore fumble, the Bears scored in one play on a 25-yard run by Ross King and held a 12-0 lead in the first quarter.

           Carpenter hit Pierre Goode on a 68-yard touchdown pass just before the first half ended to give Hazlewood a 34-6 halftime lead. They tacked on a fourth quarter score to complete the scoring.

  Stevenson 0   0   0   8   8  
  Hazlewood 0   18   8   6   32  

           Stevenson returned to Leighton for a rematch of week six when the same two teams met. This Saturday night game was not as close as the Bears rolled to a 32-8 victory over the Panthers. In their best performance of the season, Hazlewood score 18 second quarter points and basically put the game out of reach for Stevenson by halftime.

           It was the Pierre and Kerry Goode show. Pierre got the first TD on a 25-yard run and Kerry scored a few minutes later on a 10-yard run for an 18-0 lead. The Bears had gotten a safety early in the game and converted both two-point conversions.

           It was more of the same after halftime. Pierre caught a touchdown pass and Kerry scored on a short run to give the Bears a 34-0 lead before Stevenson scored late.

  Hazlewood 0   0   14   2   16  
  Gordo 6   0   0   6   12  

           Next up were the Gordo Green Wave in the semi-finals of the playoffs. The game was played in Gordo. The Bears faced a halftime deficit before coming back for a 16-12 win. Training 6-0 at the half, Hazlewood scored 14 third quarter points and held on for a chance to return to the state championship game.

           Gordo marched 83 yards with the opening kickoff and scored on a 8-yard run. Following the missed extra point, Gordo led 6-0 with 9:59 to play in the first. The teams were scoreless through the remainder of the first half.

           Hazlewood got going after intermission. They capped a 75-yard drive with Pierre Goode's 28-yard run and Langham's PAT for a 7-6 lead. The Bears scored again on a screen pass to Pierre Goode for 38 yards and a 14-6 lead with just over a minute left in the third.

           Gordo scored with 11:05 left in the game when a bad snap on a punt rolled into the end zone and the Green Wave recovered to cut the lead to 14-12. A two-point conversion pass fell incomplete. Hazlewood got a safety on a sack by Curtis Spangler with just over two minutes to play for the final 16-12 margin. Gordo did get one more chance by recovering the onside free kick but could not move the football.

           The defense played great after the initial Gordo drive and held them to one first down in the second half and eleven yards of total offense.

  Hazlewood 6   20    0   3   29  
  Dadeville 0   8   8   0   16  

           In the Class 2A state championship game, the Golden Bears face defending 2A champion Dadeville. The Tigers came into the game with an 11-2 record against Hazlewood's 12-0. The Bears jumped out to a 26-0 lead and held on for their second consecutive state title.

           Hazlewood completely dominated the first half. They scored four of the first six times they had possession of the football. Kerry Goode scored twice, Joseph Langham and Antonio Cowley also added touchdowns.

           The offense rolled up 162 yards of offense in the first half and combined with Dadeville turnovers, the Tigers never had a chance. After the Bears led 26-0 at halftime, the Tigers came back to cut the lead to 26-16 with 2:50 left in the third period. The defense held and the offense got a 32-yard field goal from Langham to seal the win.

           As the final whistle sounded, the Hazlewood Golden Bears celebrated their second straight title and fourth overall. They also won championships in 1970 and 1978 but his was the first 2A title. 

           Kerry Goode was hampered by an ankle injury much of the season but still managed to rush for 837 yards and average 8.7 yards a carry. He was named the 2A Back of the Year by the ASWA. He signed with Alabama and looked to have a promising college career before a knee injury cut it short.

          Named to the Birmingham News first team all-state squad were Joseph Langham, Kerry Good and Lee Ester Garner. David Hogan was named coach of the year by the ASWA.


8/27 21 Courtland . . . . . . . . . 6
9/3 32 New Hope . . . . . . . . . . 7
9/10 28 Cherokee . . . . . . . . . . 8
9/17 28 Parrish . . . . . . . . . . . 14
9/24 47 Red Bay . . . . . . . . . . . 7
10/1 27 Stevenson . . . . . . . . . 19
10/8     OPEN . . . . . . . . . . . . .  
10/15 33 Hatton . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
10/22 OPEN . . . . . . . . . . . . .
10/29 35 Lexington . . . . . . . . . 23
11/5 41 Sparkman . . . . . . . . . . 13
11/12 44 Ardmore * . . . . . . . . . 6
11/20 32 Stevenson * . . . . . . . 8
11/26 16 Gordo * . . . . . . . . . . . 12
12/3 29 Dadeville # . . . . . . . 16

413 13-0 145

* Playoff game
# State championship game

Amazing Seasons, a series on the greatest seasons in high school football history

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