Grangers Bounce Back, Cavaliers Top Handley; Crisp Academy Defeats Cougars, 42-33

Dialleo Burks challenged his LaGrange High football team, and the Grangers responded.

Burks, the LHS coach, was gushing and grateful with the Grangers 28-7 win at Villa Rica on Friday night.

“This was a huge win, and it feels great. We faced some adversity, but we played together and stayed together. We did show some emotion. We controlled the line (of scrimmage),” said Burks.

His LaGrange team is 11 now. The Grangers jumped out to a 21-0 first half lead against Villa Rica. Senior quarterback Amad Ogletree scored the first La-Grange High touchdown of the evening on a 30-yard sprint to the goal line.

Granger senior cornerback Jalen Wilson also scored in the first half on a 25-yard interception return. La-Grange High fullback Cornell Kendrick put the icing on the victory cake with a 2-yard scoring run in the second half.

Callaway had a Friday night confrontation, too. The Cavaliers took the trek to Roanoke, Ala. for a matchup of two Top 10 teams. Callaway found itself down at halftime, 21-14 to the 8th-ranked Handley Tigers.

But in the second half, Callaway played its best football and clobbered Handley, 42-28. The Cavaliers dug deep and came up with drive after drive, and defensive stop after defensive stop.

“Our kids played with some big hearts. It was a physical game, and Handley is a great team. But we kept fighting,” said Callaway head football coach Pete Wiggins.

The Cavaliers improved to 2-0 as Braylon Sanders, Dylan Johnson and junior running back D’jon Atkins led the way. Callaway High School was not going to leave Alabama with a loss, and the Cavaliers didn’t.

Lafayette Christian hit the road, too, on Friday night and suffered a 42-33 defeat to Crisp Academy. Coach Nate Shaw’s LCS Cougars fell behind 20-6 against the Wildcats in the first half. Lafayette Christian rallied and trailed by just one point at halftime, however. Nick Spittler of LCS returned two kickoffs for touchdowns with runs of 68 and 65 yards in the first half. The Cougars headed to the locker room with some momentum, although trailing 28-27 in the game at Cordele. In the final moments of the second period, Lafayette Christian sophomore quarterback Landon Whitley threw a 45-yard touchdown pass to tight end Josh Shepherd.

“We turned the ball over early, but we battled. We scratched and clawed, and we played with confidence at times,” said Shaw.

The Cougars, the defending state football champions in the Georgia Independent Christian Athletic Association, still didn’t beat the Crisp Academy Wildcats. Lafayette Christian came up a few plays short, even with a 60-yard pass completion from Whitley to Shepherd in the second half.

“We ran out of time. We have to start winning,” said Shaw.

The Cougars fell to a rather startling 0-2 record. Lafayette Christian won 10 games last season.

Chris Fernsler Sports Writer