January 17, 2019

Braves dominate Blue Devils to close out regular season

(Bremen, GA) — Coach Tim Barron and the Braves football team ended the regular season on a high note Friday night in soggy and foggy Bremen, rolling over the region rival Blue Devils 41-13 to finish with a 7-3 record overall and a perfect 5-0 region record headed into the state playoffs this week.

Senior Austin Barron led the Braves with another big statistical night, scoring four touchdowns while rushing for 184 yards.

The win was one of the most compete performances of the season for the Braves who dominated the Devils in every facet of the game in the first half.

Defensive coordinator D.J. Curbow’s defense completely shut down the Devil offense allowing just 43 total yards in the first half and only two first downs.

Seniors Austin Dean and Matt Brown again led the way up front. Dean led the team with 13 tackles and a sack and Brown was not far behind with 12 tackles and he shared a sack with another senior Quay Daniel. Senior Ethan Hand had four big tackles up front.

Ethan Brant, Rad Brooks, and Jaden Moreland also had big nights on the defensive side. Freshman Andrew Leak had a nice special teams play, blocking a Devil PAT attempt late in the game.

Sophomore quarterback Emory Jones continued to shine with another nice passing night and his best rushing night of the season on offense. Jones completed 5 of 10 passes for 113 yards including a 23-yard TD pass to Barron, while he rushed for 78 yards on just five carries with a touchdown of his own in the first quarter.

Junior Dayvin Troy had a nice touchdown run and 59 yards on six touches.

The Braves offensive and defensive lines continued to show how they have gelled as a unit this season with another nice game up front in the trenches.

Coach Barron thinks they have been instrumental especially in the late season run towards the playoffs.

“You know it gets said over and over , but you win or lose up front and that’s probably the best game our big guys have put together this year,” Barron said after the game.

“For our lines on both sides of the ball to come out and execute the way they did tonight makes me proud, they have really worked hard this year.”

Senior defensive lineman Matt Brown (#21), Rad Brooks (#54), and Ethan Hand (#61) led the way up front for the Braves defense in Friday night's 41-13 win

Senior defensive lineman Matt Brown (#21), Rad Brooks (#54), and Ethan Hand (#61) led the way up front for the Braves defense in Friday night’s 41-13 win

Seniors Jacob Bishop, Hunter Lane, Andrew Cannon, and Chandler Moon have anchored the offensive line all season long with an added boost from freshman Michael Cheney who missed Friday’s start with an injury.

Junior Peyton Ehlers played well filling in for Cheney who is expected to be back this Friday night for the playoffs.

Junior Trey Wiggins was 5-for-5 on PAT attempts, completing a stellar season at the kicking position. Wiggins connected on 34 of 34 PAT attempts this season and was 3-for-3 on field goal attempts.

The best news for Barron and staff heading into this Friday’s round one home tilt with the Greene County Tigers is the injury situation.

After battling a brutal amount of injuries early in the season, the Braves seemed to be relatively healthy going into the postseason. Diamond Delgado missed Friday night’s start but like Cheney is probable to return this week. Austin Barron appears to be near 100 percent and looked very strong and fast Friday night especially on a 91-yard scamper in the first half.

“I’m just so thankful that we’re all getting back healthy at the right time,” said Barron. “It was a tough four weeks of no football for Austin having to miss several weeks in his senior year, but I’m just thankful that he’s back healthy and thankful that the team is back healthy.”

The Brave senior class concluded the most impressive four-year region record in school history Friday night, amassing an awesome 25-1 record over four season including three region crowns.

“I can’t say enough about this senior class,” added Coach Barron. “It has been a pleasure to coach this blue-collar group of hard-working high character kids. I’m thankful to have a group that doesn’t mind working and practicing and is willing to put in the work week in and week out.”

The Braves (7-3, 5-0) will host Greene County (5-5, 3-3) from Region 8-AA at Staples Stadium this Friday night with a 7:30 p.m kickoff.

In the other Region 5-AA versus Region 8-AA round one match-ups, Manchester (R5 #2) will host Washington-Wilkes (R8 #3), Bowdon (R5 #3) will travel to Union County (R8 #2), and Bremen (R5 #4) will travel to Rabun County (R8 #1).

The winner of the Braves and Tigers will advance to round two where they will meet the winner between Fitzgerald (R1 #2) and Putnam County (R4 #3). If the Braves advance they would host round two at Staples on November 20.

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