LOUISVILLE, Ga. – The Piedmont Academy Cougars took the field against the Thomas Jefferson Academy Jaguars on October 8 after lightning strikes moved out of the area. The Jaguars won 28-0 and earned themselves home-field advantage in the GISA Playoffs.
Both offenses were stagnant in the first quarter. The first, first down did not come until six minutes into the football game.
The Jaguars fumbled their first three snaps from scrimmage as the wet field conditions played a factor early and often in the football game. The Jaguars’ wishbone-style offense kicked into gear when Jags center and quarterback Cam Beasley smoothed out their snapping problem giving their offense a chance to work. With a minute left in the first quarter, Beasley handed the ball off to Gerald Hunt for a hard-earned touchdown to make the score 7-0.
In the second quarter, the Piedmont offense was stymied by both a tight Jaguars defense and an inability to turn their spread-style offense into receptions. Piedmont quarterback Justin Reynolds was unable to convert both short and long passes most of the night.
Late in the second quarter, the Jags ran a few effective counter plays to Brinson Evans who scored on a 25-yard run, evading standout Piedmont tackler Mason Tanner whose name was heard over the intercom all night.
The score at half was 13-0 Jaguars and the Homecoming Queen was announced.
The third quarter started with a long 63-yard kick return by Cougars’ Ryan Holder to put Piedmont into the driver’s seat. After two Cougar first downs, the Jags linebacking group forced a fumble and linemen Christopher Biggers recovered the football for the Jags.
After the fumble, multiple turnovers ensued. The Jaguars coughed the football back up to Piedmont who then returned the favor by tossing an interception to Gerald Hunt who ran the intercepted ball 55-yards for a coveted Pick-6 to make the score 21-0 Jags.
Reynolds’ receivers deflected both of his interceptions on the night into the air. All the rain early in the week made for a night of turnovers despite the ball boy’s best efforts to swap dry balls in and out.
In the fourth quarter the Jags run-heavy offense ate away at the game clock with simple, positive running plays. On a single drive, the Jags kept possession of the football for a total of nine minutes. The time-consuming drive did not allow Piedmont’s offense, lead by hard-nosed running back Michael Joseph, any chance to make a comeback.
Next Friday, on Oct. 15, Piedmont will face the Augusta Prep Day Cavaliers on the road.