Bowdon 24, Monticello 7
The Red Devils are sitting at 3-0 for the first time since 2013.
Bowdon head coach Rich Fendley is in the midst of engineering a complete turnaround of The Friendly City’s hometown team in his just his second year at the helm. He led the club to a season-opening win over Valwood two weeks before pulling off an emotional upset of Bremen last week.
Following Friday night’s triumph at Warren P. Sewell Field, Fendley spoke about the excitement brewing in the football-crazed Bowdon community through the first three weeks of the season.
“I’m glad there’s a buzz. I’ve always said I want to coach in a place where there’s pressure to win and it means something to win, and that’s definitely the community that we play in,” he said. “I’m excited for the excitement and I hope it just keeps on with our kids.”
Suffering slightly from the fatigue of its recent successes, Bowdon predictably came out flat Friday night and allowed the Hurricanes to jump out to an early lead on a 60-yard rushing score. The Red Devils answered on the ensuing drive, however, to tie the game.
A field goal later in the opening quarter gave Bowdon the lead, and a touchdown from sophomore running back Gage Stephens right before halftime allowed the Red Devils to go into the locker room with a 17-7 advantage.
“We thought that was the kind of running back Gage could be,” Fendley said. “In our first game, Valwood stacked a lot of defenders in the box to take away the run. And it then in the Bremen game, Ben Fortson and Robert McNeal had a lot of yards throwing and catching the football. So, Monticello came out and took away the passing game, which opened up the running game. Gage ran and there were flashes of what we know he’s going to become — one of the great running backs in this area.”
Bowdon’s defense held up its end in the third quarter before the third rushing touchdown of the night put the game on ice late in the fourth.
“I’m very, very pleased,” Fendley said. “I told our kids that the sign of a team that’s getting better and has a chance to be good is how they respond following a big game like the Bremen game. We didn’t play our best game [Friday,] but we found a way to come out on top and keep our win streak alive.”
The Red Devils will be idle for the next two weeks before returning to the gridiron to face Region 6-A rival North Cobb Christian on the road on Sept. 27.
Carrollton 48, Riverdale 35
The Trojans remained in the No. 1 spot in this week’s Georgia Sports Writers Association Poll.
And, after knocking out the red-hot Raiders in come-from-behind fashion at Grisham Stadium on Friday night, they appear poised to remain at the top for another week.
Carrollton [2-0] found itself behind early when Riverdale’s Derwin Burgess picked off a Myles Morris pass and took it 70 yards for the house to put the Raiders up 7-3. Soon thereafter, another Morris pick — one of four he threw on the night — set up a six-yard passing touchdown from Avaun Rucker to Derwin Burgess that made it 13-3 with 5:42 to go in the first quarter.
Carrollton kicker Damean Dominguez chipped away at the deficit with a 33-yard field goal late in the opening quarter, and the Trojan defense tied things up early in the second when Juan Carlos Nieves returned an interception 32 yards for a game-tying touchdown.
Senior running back Mecose Todd found the end zone twice on runs of one and two yards to send the Trojans into halftime with a 27-13 lead.
Riverdale made things interesting when Frederick Collins hit Marcus Polite on a 23-yard touchdown strike with 9:47 to go. However, Carrollton proved to be too much as Todd scored for the third time and his team pulled away for their second win of the year.
The Trojans will open up Region 7-AAAAA play next Friday at cross-county rival Villa Rica at 7:30 p.m.
Haralson County 59, Armuchee 0
Backed by sophomore quarterback Clay Hyatt’s three rushing touchdowns and a dominant defensive performance, the Rebels ran their way to a blowout victory over the Indians on the road Friday night.
Haralson County [2-0] will be idle next Friday, but will look to keep things rolling against Adairsville on Sept. 20.
Mount Zion 22, Coosa 21
After trailing 14-6 at halftime, the Eagles battled their way back for a one-point win to move to .500 on the year.
Mount Zion [1-1] will return home for the first time this year when it plays host to cross-county adversary Temple next Friday at 7:30 p.m.