Buccaneers get region revenge
ROSSVILLE — Allatoona looked to be in midseason form Friday night against Ridgeland, dominating on both sides of the ball in a 28-7 win at Panther Stadium.
ã€€The win for Allatoona (2-0) avenged a 13-12 loss in the Region 7AAA championship game last November.
ã€€“I think our kids were really excited to come back up here not just because of unfinished business, but because they are a great team,” Allatoona coach Gary Varner said. “The defense played a great game for us again, only giving up one big play, but other than that it was a great hard-hitting effort.”ã€€
The Buccaneers’ defense set the tone early after Ridgeland (0-2) took their opening 11-play drive deep into Allatoona territory. On fourth-and-1, the Panthers opted to go for it on the Buccaneers’ 14, but Allatoona linebacker Justin Wade dropped Ridgeland running back Sharik Smith in the backfield to force a critical turnover on downs that stopped the drive..
ã€€Allatoona’s ensuing drive stalled out with Ridgeland’s defense geared up to stop Miles Jones. When Allatoona got the ball back a second time, Varner turned to his not oft-used passing game to start moving the chains.
ã€€“The run game was good, but they were stacking the box in the first half,” Varner said. “Then, Jeremy Uzee made some great plays at the quarterback spot to get things going for us.”
ã€€Uzee connected on a 43-yard pass to T.J. Herron to start the second drive, which was followed by a 12-yard pass to Tommy Davis moved the ball inside the 20 and Miles Jones capped things off with a 3-yard plunge to make the score 7-0 with 8:25 to play in the second quarter.
ã€€Allatoona was able to get another quick stop on defense to get the ball back in Uzee’s hands with 5 minutes to play in the half. The junior quarterback promptly led a 12-play, 84 yard drive to the end zone again. Jones again cashed in the touchdown with a 7-yard plunge with 28 seconds to play before halftime.ã€€
Uzee connected on 7-of-8 passes in the half for all 114 of his passing yards.ã€€
Varner said that, with a second strong performance from his quarterback, he expects teams to start honoring his passing attack soon.
ã€€“That’s two in a row,” Varner said. “It might take a couple more before people really start to believe it, but as long as we keep executing, we are going to give teams some problems.”
Jones carried the ball 29 times, never gaining more than 15 yards on one play, but still racked up 163 yards and three touchdowns.ã€€
Ridgeland was led by Smith’s 88 yards on 23 carries. Torrie Porter scored their lone touchdown on a 46-yard fourth quarter run when the game was all but over.
Read more: The Marietta Daily Journal - Buccaneers get region revenge