(Manchester) — Coach Barron’s Heard County Braves looked sharp and well-rested Friday night in Manchester where they cruised to a 54-13 win over the Blue Devils to take control of their own destiny in the Region Championship picture.
The Braves (5-1, 4-0 in Region 5-AA) took command early and never looked back leading 14-0 at the end of the first quarter and 27-6 at the half.
Junior Duranta Dunson continued to run wild rushing for 238 yards and scoring four touchdowns on just 13 touches in the game.
Friday Night’s Captains take the field (L-R): Taylor Smith, Jace Mock, Trey Wiggins, and Levi Brown
The blow-out win was a far cry from last season’s close 28-21 overtime win over the Devils in Franklin.
One of the big momentum plays of the night came on the Braves kickoff after the first touchdown when senior Tori Rogers was knocked to the ground by a Devil blocker before bouncing right back up for a big stop which sent the Brave crowd into a frenzy.
The Brave Nation traveled well as usual Friday night appearing to outdraw the home side of the stadium.
Senior QB Jonathon Hunt completed a 15-yard pass to Elijah Toney for the games second TD.
The Blue Devils got on the board late in the first half on a 50-yard TD pass.
An unusually long third quarter was dominated by the Braves 21-0 amid some intense sparring between the two rival squads resulting in several penalties.
Tori Rogers appeared 100% healthy for the first time all season and had a solid offensive night gaining 82 yards on just five carries with a TD in the third quarter.
Taylor Smith also added a TD on a quarterback keeper in the third and Austin Barron scored his second TD in as many weeks on a 44-yard run from scrimmage.
The starting offensive line of Jake Edwards, Dylan Yates, Hunter Lane, Jace Mock, and Levi Brown controlled the line of scrimmage for much of the evening.
Fans in the stands celebrated Barron’s 100th win by holding up signs at the end of the game while the players celebrated their coach’s big accomplishment by dousing him with of a cooler full of water.
The Braves return home next week to face Jordan for homecoming.