The Holy Ground Baptist Academy football team took its first step toward the state crown with a 41-26 victory over New Creation Christian Academy on Friday night in the opening round of the GICAA playoffs.
The Stallions (10-0) are the only team in the 26-member 8-man football league with an undefeated record and they'll put that on the line again this Friday when they play host to defending state champion Lafayette Christian in the second round.
In Friday's playoff opener, Holy Ground dominated the Crusaders, erupting for 41 points in the first quarter, which allowed head coach Jamie Perry to bring in his backups for the remainder of the night.
“Great win [Friday]," Perry said. “God has been good to us.”
The Stallions have endured some nagging injuries for the past few weeks and lost their starting guard last week on the day of the game with an ankle injury. Eli Horsley filled the role and was able to keep the Stallion offense firing on all cylinders.
“Every time someone goes down, someone steps in and fills the gap,” added Perry.
Special teams proved to be a bright spot for the Stallions, as Brady Yates went 3-of-4 on extra points, while Chris Organ sent three kickoffs into the end zone for touchbacks and Demontrea Ackey converted a successful onside kick that was recovered by Zeb Denney.
Offensively, Brady Yates led the charge with seven carries for 84 yards and two touchdowns, while also hauling in a 28-yard touchdown pass from Jackson Yates.
Christian Newman had three receptions for 34 yards and a touchdown. Jackson Yates finished with one rushing touchdown and two passing scores.
The Stallion defense held the Crusaders to 10 yards of offense in the first quarter, as Brady Yates recorded six tackles, including two for a loss with a fumble recovery. Denney had a 50-yard pick-six to go along with a fumble recovery.
Holy Ground continues its title march this week with a second-round showdown in Roopville.
“We have got to step up our game every week and look forward to the challenge ahead this week. We have a special group of young men who buy into a scheme and go out and execute to perfection,” Perry said. “We would like to see the stands full this Friday night. Come out and support these young men as they compete for the chance at a state championship."