While it was a rainy Friday night, the weather didn’t stop the Thomson Bulldogs from raining down touchdowns in a 55-0 win over the Cross Creek Razorbacks in Augusta.
The region win keeps the Dogs’ record perfect at 6-0, 3-0 in region play and sets up a huge rivalry game this Friday night at The Brickyard against the 4-1 Burke County Bears. The Bears are 2-0 in region play after a 41-7 win over Harlem at the Bear Den Friday night.
“We came out and took care of business early,” said Michael Youngblood, Thomson head coach. “We played great offense and were able to get different people involved. We played great defense and we were able to get the shutout.”
The Dogs scored on every possession on the night with the first score coming the first quarter on a 29-yard pass play from Noah Story to D’Vonta Babbs. Two minutes later, Cervuntes Felts recovered a punt that was blocked by Joshua Sharpe and ran it in for a touchdown. Toward the end of the opening quarter, Anthony Jeffery scored on a 4-yard run.
The Bulldogs scored three more TDs before the half. Jontavious Curry scored on a 24-yard run, Jordan Lane got a TD after a 19-yard run, and Sharpe ran a fumble back for a 52-yard touchdown. In the third quarter, Curry ran the ball in from 4 yards out, and Jeffery scored on a 19-yard run.
The Bulldogs had 347 total yards of offense with Curry having 102 yards on nine carries. Jeffrey was next with 80 yards on nine carries and Lane had 64 yards on five carries. Story was 4-for-5 passing for 51 yards. Quan Rogers and Sharpe led the defense, which held the Razorbacks to 132 total yards, with nine tackles each.
Travion Curry and Jaquan Hart each recorded eight tackles. So far this season, Thomson has shut out three opponents and has averaged allowing 4.5 points per game, while the Bulldogs have averaged scoring 40 points.
After the game, Youngblood said he congratulated the team and challenged them.
“The one coming Friday is the one we have been waiting on,” he said. “It’s our rival game, and 9-times-out-of-10, it’s for the region championship. We have to do everything right this week from the classroom to field. Let’s make sure we do everything in our power to do the right thing.”
The two teams have met 20 times over the years with Burke taking 17 of those games. The Bulldogs under Youngblood, who is a Burke County native and was twice an assistant for Bear head coach Eric Parker, are 1-2 with the Dogs winning 30-23 last year in Waynesboro.
“This year, we are better off defensively and are more diverse offensively,” said Youngblood, adding that THS will have to be prepared for Burke’s pressure off the edge. “Defensively, we have to protect ourselves against the pass because they are going to take their shots.”
Youngblood said that the Bears’ Jaylen Golphin is an outstanding receiver.
“Their quarterback, Marshall Flowers, does a good job of managing the offense,” said the coach. “Running backs A’merre Williams and Charlie Dorsey are able to find creases and holes. On defense, transfer Ivan Arroyo is very active up front and they do a good job getting defense moving in gaps.”
A new opponent call for minor changes.
“Each week we try to add some new wrinkles because of scouting and films being available, so we go back and look at what we can do different that we haven’t done before,” said Youngblood.
The coach said injury wise, the team was in good shape. Tay Martin, Thomson starting quarterback, was available for the Cross Creek game, but the decision was made for him not to play. Burke County’s sole loss came against 4-A Benedictine 59-28, and the Bears were able to defeat North Augusta (S.C) 33-27 in overtime. In Burke’s other region win, the Bears defeated Cross Creek 41-8.
“You can throw stats, common opponents, and so forth out,” said Youngblood, who encouraged fans to get to The Brickyard early as a large crowd is expected. “This is a rivalry game where we have to buckle our chinstraps and bite down on our mouthpieces. It’s time for us to go play and we want our kids to play fast, physical and to execute. We do that and when it’s all said and done, we’ll be fine.”
Tickets will be available at the gate, or by visiting https://gofan.co/app/school/GA6657.