It took three overtimes, but in the battle of Cougars, Newnan knocked off visiting Alexander 40-34 in the first game of the season at Drake Stadium Friday night.
A new-high tech scoreboard was on display for the first time as the Cougars played in front of the home crowd for the first time this year.
The two teams ended regulation play even at 20-all and took turns scoring in regulation with each team alternating a series starting at its opponents 15.
After Alexander missed a 30-yard overtime field goal, attempt, Newnan clinched the victory when Aubrey Carter scored the winning touchdown on a five-yard sprint.
Carter and Omarian Florence served as the one-two punch out of the backfield for Newnan.
Newnan overcame a couple of first-half turnovers that led to Alexander scores to improve its record to 2-1 overall.
Alexander dropped to 1-1.
Alexander converted one of the Newnan turnovers into a field goal and a 3-0 lead with 1:14 left in the first quarter.
Aaron Watts interception in the end zone, set up Alexander’s first scoring drive.
Alexander matched the ball down to the Newnan 4-yard line converting three third-down series along the way.
After the drive stalled, Alexander kicked a 21-yard field goal.
Alexander increased the lead to 10-0 with 4:49 left in the first half when the defense returned a Newnan fumble for the game’s first touchdown.
Newnan found a spark of its own right before the end of the first half to cut the lead to 10-7.
Qunard Arnold’s long kickoff return gave Newnan some of its best field position of the first half as it started at the Alexander 49.
Carter started the series with a 15-yard run and Joshua Harris made a 15-yard catch during the drive.
Carter put Newnan on the board with the first of his touchdowns, scoring on a 10-yard carry with 2:07 left to cut Alexander’s lead to 10-7 at the break.
Newnan mixed its offense up all night between the run and the pass and it showed on its first possession of the second half when Micheal Maggins connected with Arnold on a 52-yard touchdown pass with 4:23 left.
The extra point failed and Newnan led 13-10.
Alexander put together a long drive of its own on the next series and tied the game at 13-13 when Jacob Tucker booted the ball through the uprights for as 35-yard field goal.
Newnan marched 81 yards in 11 plays on the next series and capped it with Florence’s 11-yard run.
The extra point gave by Sam Williems Newnan a 20-14 lead, but Alexander helped send the game into overtime when Bryson Irby added the final score in regulation.
In overtime, both teams exchanged scores early. After Alexander went up 27-20, Newnan kept the game going with a score of its own when Florence found the end zone.
Newnan started the next overtime period tied at 27-27, and Arnold capped the drive with a touchdown catch from Maggins and an extra point from Sam Willems to go up 34-27.
Alexander answered right back with a touchdown to keep the game tied at 34, but missed a field goal attempt on its next overtime series to set the table for Newnan.
Newnan heads back on the road Friday nigh when it travels to Griffin.