Braves bounced in south Georgia; Dawgs drop one in Sandersville
Baldwin – 20
Ware Co.. – 48
WAYCROSS – The Gators, the defending GHSA Class AAAAA state champions, flexed some south Georgia muscle on Friday night, using a barrage of big plays to bounce the Braves.
Baldwin (2-1) obviously didn't play great, but the final score was at least somewhat deceiving. Dreadful field position and a pair of first-half interceptions doomed the Braves. The first interception gave the Gators the ball inside the Braves' red zone, while the second pick went for a Ware County touchdown.
Quarterback Lamar Pounds, despite the two costly interceptions, looked more composed and comfortable leading the Braves' offense. Pounds' cadence caused Ware to jump offsides a whopping five times in the first quarter, alone. Pounds connected with speedster Armontae Palmer on a picturesque deep bomb touchdown late in the first quarter, temporarily silencing the crowd and cutting the deficit to 10-6.
The second quarter, however, was all Gators and all the time, with the home team scoring four touchdowns.
Star tailback Micah Welch was completely bottled up by the Gators, who were loading the tackle box and deadset on stopping the Baldwin running game by any means necessary. Welch's longest run of the first half was three yards.
Baldwin's revenge tour sort of hit a roadblock on Friday night. After drubbing Peach County and Putnam County to being the season, in the process avenging losses to those teams the previous season, the Braves weren't able to hang with the Gators, again ranked No. 1 in Class AAAAA this season. Ware beat Baldwin 41-3 in 2022 at Braves Stadium.
Next up for the kids from Milledgeville is a home game next Friday night vs. Washington County. The Golden Hawks' second-year head coach – Robert Edwards – was a star running back at Georgia and a first-round NFL draft pick. Waco began the season with a 46-6 loss to Swainsboro, which is one of the best teams in this part of Georgia. Baldwin won last year's tilt against Waco 35-28 over in Sandersville.
GMC – 13
Brentwood – 27
SANDERSVILLE – The Dawgs fought hard, and a 5-yard touchdown pass from Logan McMillan to Jonathan Roach cut the Eagles lead to 21-13 in the third quarter.
Brentwood, however, added a touchdown early in the fourth quarter to pull away for the 15-point victory.
GMC (0-3) had its best night on offense so far this season, racking up 17 first downs and 290 total yards.
Senior Jessie Washington once again was the best player on the field for either team, piling up the rushing yards and also piling up the tackles on defense.
Brentwood, representing GISA Class AA, is coached by Adam Lord, a former John Milledge Academy head boys basketball coach.