What a difference a minute can make.
Thomson scored twice within about 60 seconds late in the third quarter to blow open a tight game with Harlem in The Brickyard. The black and gold Bulldogs held a tenuous seven-point lead until a pair of quick interceptions powered them to a 35-7 win.
Defensive end Justin Samuels picked off Harlem's Wesley Morris and trotted, untouched, 21 yards for the score with under 6 minutes to go in the third.
Harlem (2-6) got off one play from scrimmage after the kickoff. Then Darius Eubanks intercepted another Morris pass, and Thomson fullback James Bonner scored from the 21 on the next play.
"I just think we did pretty good on defense tonight," said Thomson defensive back Tresvantis Chambliss, who picked off two of Morris' five errant passes. "We're coming together, and we're trying our best to get ready for all the teams that we play."
Thomson (7-0-1) made the score 28-0 with 8:09 remaining in the game after the second of Chambliss' interceptions.
He wrestled the ball away from a Harlem receiver in mid-air and was knocked out of bounds at the 1-yard line. Quarterback Brandon Turman punched it in on the next play.
A big portion of Thomson's offense came, uncharacteristically, from Turman's arm. He connected on six of 12 passes for 134 yards. Eubanks was the recipient of most of that, with two receptions, for 98 yards.
"It feels real good," Turman said. "Thomson usually never throws the ball that much, so it feels good to be able to throw that many and connect on them. I think its something we're moving toward, and it gives me confidence when they let me throw more."
Thomson's final score came when the game was no longer in doubt. Freshman halfback Dontavis Brown handled five of the eight rushes after a Harlem onside kick. With 9 seconds left in the game, he found the end zone from 7 yards out.
Harlem's lone score came after running back Seth Hill found his groove. Starting on its own 35, Harlem had three first down runs from Hill before he ran in from the Thomson 7-yard line with 3:28 left in the game.
Thomson started the scoring with a 55-yard, 4:00 drive that ended on a 7-yard Turman touchdown pass to wingback Jeremy McGahee in the first quarter for a 7-0 lead.
THOMSON 35, HARLEM 7
Harlem 0 0 0 7 - 7
Thomson 7 0 14 14 - 35
T - Brandon Turman 7 pass to Jeremy McGahee (Jay Bieltz kick) 4:50.
T - Justin Samuels 21 interception return (Bieltz kick) 5:56.
T - James Bonner 21 run (Bieltz kick) 4:49.
T - Turman 1 run (Bieltz kick) 8:05.
H - Seth Hill 7 run (Robert Emory kick) 3:28.
T - Dontavis Brown (Bieltz kick) 0:09.
First downs H7 T13
Rushes-yards H31-63 T44-207
Passing yards H89 T134
Comp.-Att.-Int. H6-14-5 T6-12-0
Punts-yards H4-31.3 T3-35.3
Fumbles-lost H1-0 T1-1
Penalties-yards H1-0 T10-105
RUSHING-Harlem: Seth Hill 10-36, Travonti Crain 11-24, Forrest Christian 1-3, Wesley Morris 9-0. Thomson: James Bonner 19-101, Carlton Martin 8-37, Brandon Turman 7-29, Dontavis Brown 4-18, Jeremy McGahee 3-14, Kwynta Brown 3-8.
PASSING-Harlem: Morris 6-14-5 89. Thomson: Turman 6-12-0 134.
RECEIVING-Harlem: Terry Jenkins 2-42, Quinten Neal 2-29, Ky Arnold 1-15, Abe Faust 1-3. Thomson: Darius Eubanks 2-98, Will Anderson 1-17, Kwynta Brown 1-12, McGahee 1-7, Bonner 1-0.