COMMERCE — Commerce’s 17-7 win over Lincoln County on Friday night at Tiger Stadium gave the Tigers something they haven’t had in 17 years.
The win for Tigers (9-1, 5-0 Region 8-A Public) captured their first region title since 2003. It also snapped a nine-game losing streak to the Red Devils (5-4, 2-2 Region 8-A Public) going back to 2002.
The Red Devils actually struck first when shifty Tevin Gartrell took a sweep 4-yards around the left end for a 7-0 lead with 10:53 left in the second quarter.
But Commerce finally broke through with just under two minutes left in the half when freshman Sammy Brown capped a long drive with a 1-yard TD run to tie the game by halftime.
Lincoln County nearly answered right back on a deep pass to Caleb Wills, who then pitched to teammate Johnny Wise. But the Commerce defense caught Wise from behind at the Tigers 5 as time expired in the first half.
And identical to the week before against Washington-Wilkes, the Tigers waited until the fourth quarter to pull away.
Dreylan Martin scored on a touchdown with 6:13 left and then Eryck Diaz booted a 28-yard field goal with just over three minutes left to seal the win.
The Tigers will take the No. 1 seed into next week’s opening round of the state playoffs.