Canes claim middle school title
by By David Royal, david.royal@daily-tribune.com
Nov 02, 2012 | 889 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Antoine Walker bulled his way from four yards out and scored on a pick-six to lead Cartersville to a 21-2 victory over Cass and claim its second region championship in three years in middle school football Thursday.

Mason Scott scored the third touchdown for Cartersville, calling his own number from three yards out.

Coach Robert Allen credited the Canes’ defensive play and the ability of its seventh graders to step up their play all season.

“Our offensive line was pretty much made up of seventh graders,” he said. “This is the first time we’ve had more than one seventh grader starting.”

He also singled out the defensive play of the Canes, especially halting a Cass drive deep in its red zone as well as causing multiple turnovers.

“I’m proud of them for making that goal-line stand,” he said. “To make that stop and get a fumble was something special.”

The game was much closer than the score might suggest as the Colonels closed the gap with a safety with 5:11 left in the contest to pull to 14-2.

Mistakes and missed opportunities proved to be the downfall of the Colonels as they turned the ball over inside the Cartersville 5-yard line on one occasion and then failed to follow up their safety with a score.

Finally, Cass got the ball late after a Cane fumble but went backward from its 19 when signal-caller Brett Gaddy was caught back at the 7 by Trey Carter. The next play, Walker moved in front of a Cass receiver at the 19-yard line to intercept for the Canes and scampered to the end zone. That turnover gave Cartersville its late, commanding lead.

Cartersville opened the game in an offensive mood as the Canes tested the Colonels with an onside kick, giving the host team at Weinman Stadium an early break when Trey Creamer got his hands on the ball.

Scott got untracked with a quick pass to Creamer to pick up two yards and a rush by Jefferson picked up 20 yards, moving the Canes to the Cass 15.

Scott called Jefferson’s number again and Cartersville was inside the 10. Two plays later Jefferson scored and after the PAT was kicked by Jonathon Cruz, the Canes led 7-0 with 5:51 left in the first quarter.

Cartersville tacked on its second score late in the second frame after a Cass punt put the ball on the Canes’ 16.

Jefferson picked up 12 yards with a carry and Tres Fezzia advanced the Canes to the 46-yard line two plays later on a 19-yard rush.

Jefferson pushed out to the Cass 45 the next play and two plays later added another dozen. Fezzia added 19 yards to move the Canes back into the red zone at the Cass 8-yard line.

Scott later capped the 10-play, 75-yard drive with his 3-yard touchdown run. Cruz again added the PAT and the host team had a 14-0 lead with 2:29 remaining in the half.

The Colonels turned their defensive play up a notch in the second half but their offensive effort was plagued by turnovers.

Cass executed a picture-perfect onside kick of its own to start the second half and started at the Cartersville 45. Joseph Kennemore made the recovery for the Colonels.

Four plays moved the ball to the 22 of the Canes but the Colonels fumbled the next play and Cartersville gained possession at its own 25.

The Colonels mixed a suddenly potent passing attack in with its rushing game and was able to move to the Cartersville 1-yard-line in 13 plays.

The next play Cass coughed up the ball when their quarterback and running back didn’t exchange the ball cleanly and Jefferson recovered for Cartersville at its own 1.

The Canes pushed the ball out one yard but a Cartersville runner was then caught in the end zone and Cass moved to 14-2.

Cass was next in business late in the fourth quarter when Cartersville fumbled at the Cass 18.

The Colonels went backward and Cartersville effectively ended the game when Jefferson picked off his pass and scored.

Cruz added his third PAT of the evening to close out scoring at 21-2.

Cartersville improved to 9-0 on the year and Cass dropped to 7-2.