Thomasville is 3-0 for the first time since 1989. And it didn’t come easy. Two of the opponents – Cairo and Thomas County Central – were ranked. Thomasville won both easily.
One reason for the good start is the play of J.T. Rice, who threw for a school-record 428 yards on Friday against Monroe. Rice played only three quarters in breaking the record set by Dion Graham in 1997.
Rice is a three-year starter who is more poised this season, according to second-year Thomasville coach Zach Grage. In 2016, Rice threw more interceptions (13) than touchdowns (11). This season, that ratio is seven touchdowns and one interception.
“When I got here, I knew J.T. had the physical skills to be great, but he definitely had some growing pains learning the offense,” Grage said. “Now that he trusts what we are doing and is in year two of the system, his interceptions have dropped dramatically, and he is doing a great job of getting the ball into playmakers’ hands.”
Grage said Rice also has the “it” factor as a leader.
“J.T. has the perfect amount of confidence, toeing the line of cocky, but not crossing it,” Grage said. “He thinks he is Aaron Rodgers on the football field and Dansby Swanson on the baseball field.”
Rice was named the Region 1-AA baseball player of the year last spring.
Rice’s efforts are among the Top Performances of last week.
*Bainbridge RB Dameon Pierce rushed for 313 yards and five touchdowns on 27 carries in a 43-33 victory over Lincoln of Tallahassee, Fla.
*Colquitt County QB Steven Krajewski was 22-of-26 passing for 245 yards and three touchdowns in a 35-21 victory over No. 1 Tucker of Class AAAAAA. Krajewski was 13-of-13 in the third quarter, when he drove his team to three straight touchdowns and helped Colquitt wipe out a 14-7 halftime deficit.
*Lowndes QB Michael Barrett was 12-of-14 passing for 195 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 187 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries in a 64-38 victory over Parkview.
*Meadowcreek TB/RET Chauncey Williams had 565 all-purpose yards and scored five touchdowns – three rushing, one receiving and one on a kickoff return – in a 51-36 victory over Duluth. Williams rushed for 330 yards on 13 carries, caught two passes for 90 yards and had 145 return yards on two kickoffs.
*Thomasville QB J.T. Rice was 18-of-27 passing for a school-record 428 yards and four touchdowns in a 45-7 victory over Monroe. The previous yardage record was 352.
Best of the rest
*Arabia Mountain RB/QB Josh Campbell rushed for 120 yards and four touchdowns in a 46-6 victory over Redan.
*Brookstone RB Richard Hill rushed for 178 yards and five touchdowns in a 34-27 victory over First Presbyterian.
*Brunswick QB Jamarius Stevens was 10-of-12 passing for 308 yards and six touchdowns in a 53-7 victory over Cook in a game that was stopped with nine minutes left in the third quarter because of bad weather. Stevens also scored a touchdown.
*Camden County QB Brooks Ryan was 18-of-26 passing for 151 yards and a touchdown and rushed for 157 yards and a touchdown on 13 carries in a 24-21 victory over Fitzgerald. RB Jalen Davis rushed for 129 yards on 16 carries.
*Carrollton QB Mark Wright was 19-of-22 passing for 263 yards and four touchdowns, each to a different receiver, in a 55-7 victory over Riverdale.
*Carver (Atlanta) QB Octavious Battle was 19-of-24 passing for 306 yards and two touchdowns in a 23-20 loss to Alexander. Jo’Quavious Marks rushed for 225 yards, and DeAntony Ball had 117 yards receiving.
*Central (Carrollton) LB Tyree Blocker had three sacks and 17 tackles overall in an 18-13 win over North Clayton.
*Central Gwinnett QB Jarren Williams was 25-of-45 passing for 320 yards and two touchdowns in a 27-21 overtime loss to Roswell. It was the third consecutive game in which Williams has thrown for more than 300 yards.
*Dodge County LB Tyler Montford had 11 solo tackles, five assists, three tackles for losses, a sack, an interception and a forced fumble in a 26-20 victory over West Laurens.
*East Laurens FB/LB Bryce Robinson rushed for 152 yards and a touchdown on 26 carries, had nine tackles, intercepted a pass and recovered a fumble in a 26-6 loss to Montgomery County.
*First Presbyterian WR Titus Moore had nine catches for 202 yards and two touchdowns in 34-27 loss to Brookstone.
*Griffin DE Damarjhe Lewis had 5.5 tackles for losses in a 31-0 victory over LaGrange.
*Heritage (Conyers) QB Caleb Pruitt passed for 405 yards and six touchdowns – four to Jordan Young – in a 42-17 victory over Ola. Pruitt completed 18 of 27 passes. Young had five catches for 195 yards.
*Irwin County RB D.J. Lundy rushed for 190 yards and four touchdowns on 30 carries in a 36-28 victory over Macon County.
*Kennesaw Mountain RB Keyon Brooks rushed for 132 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries and returned a kickoff 88 yards for a touchdown in a 31-14 victory over Sprayberry.
*Lee County DB Tay Mayo had two interceptions and returned one 100 yards for a touchdown in a 47-6 victory over Hardaway. This was second game in a row in which he intercepted two passes and returned one for a touchdown.
*Liberty County LB Alvin Roberts had 12 tackles, three for losses, and a safety and blocked a field-goal try on the final play of the game to preserve a 36-34 victory over Statesboro.
*Lowndes RB Travis Tisdale rushed for 105 yards and a touchdown on seven carries and returned a kickoff 98 yards for a touchdown in a 64-38 victory over Parkview.
*Mill Creek LB Shaka Heyward had 12 tackles and two sacks in a 20-7 victory over Dacula.
*Montgomery County DT/OT Jaheim Wilson, a sophomore, had 13 tackles, three for losses, one a sack, and played the entire game on offense and defense in a 26-6 victory over East Laurens. It was Montgomery County’s first opening-game win since 2003.
*Milton RB Solomon Vanhorse rushed for 149 yards and a touchdown on 17 carries in a 24-6 victory over Cambridge.
*Monroe Area QB Chandler Byron was 15-of-19 passing for 306 yards and six touchdowns and rushed for 114 yards on 14 carries in a 49-24 victory over Social Circle.
*Morgan County QB Trey Patterson was 19-of-36 passing for a school-record 304 yards and three touchdowns in a 28-13 victory over North Oconee. His top receivers were Anthony Cooper (5-144-2) and Jordan Huff (8-106-1).
*North Murray QB Preston Poag Jr. was 20-of-37 passing for 352 yards and four touchdowns in a 42-26 loss to Coosa. Connor Rice had three TD receptions and 139 receiving yards.
*Parkview WR Malik Washington had a school-record 16 receptions for 195 yards and one touchdown in a 64-38 loss to Lowndes.
*Pickens RB Robert Davis rushed for 104 yards and a touchdown on eight carries and caught six passes for 69 yards in a 39-28 loss to Pepperell. Davis also had 114 kickoff-return yards and 287 all-purpose yards.
*Providence Christian PK/DB Josh Jones had seven tackles, intercepted a pass, had 46 yards receiving and kicked the game-winning 30-yard field goal in a 17-14 overtime victory over Riverside Military.
*Roswell RB Kamonty Jett rushed for 227 yards and three touchdowns on 40 carries in a 27-21 overtime victory over Central Gwinnett.
*Savannah Country Day RB Adam Byck rushed for 245 yards and three touchdowns on 33 carries in a 45-13 victory over Lanier County.
*Screven County QB Armani Bunbury was 18-of-26 passing for 249 yards and three touchdowns to Tyquan Johnson (67, 28, 19 yards) in a 48-13 victory over Wade Hampton of South Carolina. Bunbury also rushed for 75 yards, including a 41-yard score.
*Shaw RB Marcus Newsome rushed for 131 yards on 31 carries in a 21-12 victory over Kendrick. Shaw ended its nine-game losing streak and earned coach Al Pellegrino his first victory at Shaw.
*South Cobb DT Kwabena Bonsu had eight tackles, three for losses, and forced and returned fumbles for 70 and 32 yards in a 22-19 loss to Wheeler.
*Taylor County RB Lyn-J Dixon rushed for 208 yards and four touchdowns on seven carries in a 58-22 victory over Greenville.
*Union Grove RB/DB Devin Tumlin rushed for 125 yards and a touchdown and had eight solo tackles and an interception in a 28-12 victory over Apalachee.
*Veterans WR/RB Jeremy Horton had nine carries for 119 yards and a touchdown and three catches for 108 yards and a touchdown in a 27-14 victory over Worth County.
*Warner Robins QB Dylan Fromm was 30-of-40 passing for 315 yards and three touchdowns in a 38-35 victory over Peach County. Julius Burnette had eight catches for 138 yards and two touchdowns.
*Wesleyan QB Banks Ramsey was 13-of-19 passing for 221 yards and touchdowns to four receivers. He also rushed for 117 yards in a 38-14 victory over Frederica Academy. WR/DB J.D. Kavel had catches for 141 yards, four tackles and a pass breakup.
*Winder-Barrow DE Logan Cash had eight tackles, three sacks, two tackles for losses and one forced fumble in a 38-14 victory over Northview.
*Windsor Forest RB Traivon Bass-Black rushed for 185 yards and four touchdowns on 22 carries in a 34-15 victory over Bryan County.
*Woodland (Stockbridge) LB Lexington Stocker had 20 tackles (14 first hits), four for losses, two sacks and two forced fumbles, one returned for a touchdown, in a 21-0 victory over Tri-Cities.
Lines of distinction
*Burke County’s offensive line of Sheldon Lanier, Kelsey Thomas, Jacoby Roberson, Austin Milner, Deriuate Butler and Jaylon Kelly. The led the way to 573 rushing yards in a 42-17 victory over Washington County. William Knight rushed for 190 yards and three touchdowns on 21 carries. The 42 points tied for the most the Bears have ever scored against Washington County.
*Creekview‘s offensive line of Tanner Toronto, Nick Pendley, Thomas Lattimer, TJ Seitz and John Williams paved the way for RB Cade Radam’s 155-yard rushing night in a 30-0 victory over Cherokee. Creekview’s offense rushed for a total of 208 yards on 40 carries, averaging 5.2 yards per carry. The offense had more than 334 yards of total offense, bringing the season total to 896 yards in two games (448 per game).
*Dodge County‘s offensive line of Alex Horne, Wyatt Hargrove, Tre’Shaun Hodge, Cade Cranford, Ty Belflower, Andrew Fowler and Tyvik Wallace paved the way for 314 rushing yards on 42 attempts in a 26-20 victory over West Laurens. R.J. Carr ran for 128 yards and two touchdowns.
*Douglas County‘s offensive line of LT Deondre Harvey, LG Nick Cullins, C Lawrence Lagrone, RG Joshua Moses and RT Desmond Thomas led the way to 506 total yards (260 rushing, 246 passing) in a 37-32 victory over Carver of Columbus. RB Uriah West had 190 yards rushing, and QB Marquise Collins passed for 246 yards and three touchdowns.
*Eastside‘s offensive line of Lamarius Benson, Dustin Morcan, Pierce Downs, Mareka Reid and Bryant Byrd paved the way for 364 rushing yards (425 total yards) on 54 offensive plays in a 16-6 victory over Alcovy. RB Taylor Carter rushed for 144 yards on 11 carries.
*Irwin County’s offensive line of tight ends Hunter Spires and Justin Wells, tackles Lochlan Cunningham, Luke Morgan and Will Burnam and guards Dalton Dunlap and Isait Alvarado and enter Kodie Spire led the way to 355 yards rushing on 64 carries in a 36-28 victory over defending Class A public-school champion Macon County. ‘’This was their breakout game because they are basically all new and came around against a great Macon County team,’’ coach Buddy Nobles said.
*Kell‘s offensive line of Jonathan Bass, Connor Gates, Brady Turner, Justin Thompson and Chris Reed were integral in Josiah Futral’s 242-yard rushing performance in a 38-35 loss to Lassiter. Kell had 365 yards rushing and 98 passing.
*Meadowcreek‘s offensive line of Romney Delao, Mark Haynes, Francisco Moire, James King, Darrius Harvey and Harry Torp led the way to 380 rushing yards in a 51-36 victory over Duluth. Meadowcreek also passed for 86 yards and allowed only one sack.
*North Cobb‘s offensive line of LT Curtis Ryans, LG Jacob Longacre, C Nick Price, RG Brandon Moore, RG Kyle Calandra and RT Tim Emerson paved the way to 327 rushing yards (389 total yards) in a 45-42 victory over Harrison. The Warriors had four backs with at least 50 yards rushing, led by Megarron Hart’s 150 yards on 20 carries. The line also was key in a 12-play drive, all runs, that took the final six minutes off the clock after Harrison cut the lead to three points.
*Riverwood‘s offensive line of Connor Flynn, Jabari Marts, Rubin Hayden, Laron Valentine and Justin Miller helped its offense rush for 444 yards in a 47-28 victory over Holy Innocents’. RB Reese White rushed for 197 of those yards and three touchdowns.
*Strong Rock Christian‘s offensive line of Wes Jones, Cody Adams, Cooper Thompson, Jack Greer and Ryan Bullock opened holes for 360 yards rushing in a 35-0 victory over King’s Ridge Christian. QB Demetrius Knight rushed for 170 yards on seven carries and scored on a 97-yard run.
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