October 23, 2018

Middle Braves maintain perfect start

The Middle Brave defense has given up less than 7 points per game in a 4-0 start

The Middle Brave defense has given up less than seven points per game in a 4-0 start

(Franklin) — The Heard County Middle School football team scored a big rivalry win to remain undefeated at 4-0 as they knocked off the visiting Bremen Blue Devils 26-8 at HCMS Thursday afternoon.

Quarterback Leroy Marsh set the tone early for the Brave offense when he connected with his favorite target Ayden Cannon on a 43-yard passing play top give the home squad an early 6-0 lead.

The Blue Devils would answer with a 21-yard 4th down TD pass of their own on the first play of the second quarter to take an 8-6 lead, but that would be all the scoring the Brave defense would allow.

Marsh found Cannon again from 25 yards out on an exciting last play of the first half and Ashton Bonner scampered in on the conversion to give Coach Dustin Lane’s squad a 14-8 halftime lead.

In the second half, it was all Tae Gray on the scoring and more tough Brave defense that lead the way. Gray found the end zone twice on rushing scores of 45 and 54 yards.

Bo Hazel and the Brave defense came up with a key stop on fourth down as the Devils were trying to tie the game early in the fourth quarter deep in Brave territory.

Lane was pleased to see his eighth grade class notch their first win over the Blue Devils in any major sport over the last three years.

“We are certainly excited about this win. This was the first time this group of 8th graders has beaten Bremen and that’s what we talked about all week,” said Coach Lane after the game.

“They have such a great tradition of Bremen football and they are just well-coached and disciplined. We went down in the first half but I really thought we rose to the occasion in the second half. We just kept fighting and that was the difference today.”

Despite the strong showing from the offense, it was the Middle Brave defense that controlled the game as it has all season long. The defensive unit is allowing less than one touchdown per game through the first four games.

The defensive front four composed of Anthoney Graley, Drew Cornelius, Bo Hazel, and Nathan McGoron have been especially dominant against opposing offenses and Lane believes one of those guys may have made the play of the game to stop the Blue Devils.

“Our defense has been stellar all year and that continues to be the thing that’s leading us,” said Lane. “Bo Hazel down here on that 4th and 1 at our 14 blowing up the center — that may have won the game for us.”

Middle linebacker Landon Holliday also played exceptionally well for the defense in Thursday’s win.

The Middle Braves will try to keep it rolling next Thursday when they travel to Temple to a face a very formidable 3-1 Tiger squad before returning home on September 29 to face Central on 8th grade day.

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