COLUMBUS -- The Lee County defense stepped up again on Friday in the Trojans’ Region 1-AAAAA opener to lead Herald No. 1 Lee to a 26-0 win against Hardaway.
The Hawks (2-4), whose offense is much-improved from last season, managed less than 100 yards against the Trojans’ defense.
“The defense played great getting the shutout,” Lee County coach Dean Fabrizio said. “Hardaway is really a dangerous team.”
Lee County (6-0, 1-0 Region 1-AAAAA) was led by Herald Dynamite Dozen QB Stephen Collier and receiver JQ Quimbley, who hooked up for two TD passes --- a 12-yard TD in the first half and a 37-yard TD in the second half. Collier also ran in for a 9-yard TD, and Trojans place kicker Michael Langston booted a 31-yard field goal. The Lee County defense recorded its third safety of the season in the second half.
The Trojans are off next week before returning to Region 1-AAAAA action Oct. 18 for a matchup against Thomas County Central.
EARLY COUNTY 19, BERRIEN 7: Early County scored twice on special teams in the second half to beat Berrien County in Friday’s Region 1-AA showdown.
The Bobcats (3-3, 1-1) broke a 7-7 tie in the third quarter when Fred Means returned a punt 34 yards for a TD, and then Akil Teal blocked a punt and recovered it in the end zone for a TD with 4:40 left in the third quarter to lift Early to the victory.
Tyrek Lyles scored on a 40-yard run in the first quarter for Early’s first TD. Lyles ended the night with 92 yards on 11 carries.
Chris James led Early’s defensive effort with 16 tackles, while Teal had 12 tackles, a forced fumble, a fumble recovery and his blocked kick for a TD.
BACONTON CHARTER 27, NORTH COBB CHRISTIAN 19: Narocis Lewis had the game of his life for the visiting Blazers, gaining 310 all-purpose yards and scoring four TDs.
Lewis, a sophomore, rushed for 215 yards and TDs of 18, 95 and 97 yards and also ran back a kickoff 95 yards for a score.
“We knew (Lewis) would be capable of being a special player, and the light is starting to flicker a little bit now in him,” Baconton coach Johnny Hayes said.
Baconton (2-4) overcame a 16-13 halftime deficit to win its second game in a row heading into a home game against St. Francis next Saturday at 3 p.m.
TCC 50, BAINBRIDGE 23: The Herald No. 4 Bearcats jumped ahead early on state-ranked Thomas County Central and led 20-14 at halftime, but TCC caught fire in the second half and rolled to a 27-point win.
“We came out with passion and played with passion and played inspired and played mistake free in the first half,” Bainbridge coach Jeff Littleton said. “That’s what we are capable of doing, and my kids saw what we are capable of doing. The second half was a whole different story.”
The Bearcats had mistakes on offenses, defense and special teams in the second half and saw what would have been a huge upset disappear.
Final stats weren’t available for the Bearcats, who play again next week at home against Harris County.
MILLER COUNTY 21, CALHOUN COUNTY 15: Calhoun County had two passes dropped in the end zone in the final minutes -- both which would have given the Cougars a late lead -- and lost the Region 1-A nail-biter.
Calhoun County jumped ahead 7-0 in the opening seconds of the game after recovering a fumble on the opening kickoff and scoring on a 40-yard pass from DeJohn Williams to his cousin, Sharrod Williams.
Miller County, however, scored 21 unanswered points and then held on in the end to improve to 2-4 overall. Calhoun fell to 1-5 on the season.
OTHER SCORES: Valwood 43, Sherwood 7 … Tiftarea 31, Crisp Academy 18 … SGA 63, Terrell Academy 21.