EAST POINT, Ga. -- Playing its second consecutive road game against a Class AAAAAA
opponent, AAA Carver-Columbus got a big night from halfback Brandon Thomas and bounced back with a 32-20 win over Tri-Cities on Friday.
Thomas rushed for 108 yards on 15 carries, including an 18-yard touchdown in the second quarter that put the Tigers up 18-0.
"It feels good to win and come back after a loss," said Thomas.
"Hopefully we can keep going and win some more."
Carver (3-1) was held to just over 100 yards in a shutout loss Sept. 14 at Colquitt County. It took the Tigers seven offensive plays to surpass that Friday.
Tri-Cities (2-2), meanwhile, couldn't get out of its own way. Carver scored two touchdowns following turnovers, including one after a muffed punt in the third quarter that put the game away.
"You can't make all those mistakes," Tri-Cities coach Kenneth Miller said. "You have to execute to the fullest against good teams. I'm shocked."
Carver moved 80 yards on six plays to the game's first score, a 27-yard pass from Torrance McGee to Jaquan Sanks midway through the first period.
With a holding penalty mixed into the drive, the Tigers gained 90 yards on the opening possession.
No. 6 Carver went up 12-0 after a turnover set the Tigers up on the Tri-Cities 1-yard line. Tim Whatley intercepted a pass from Bulldogs quarterback Kareem Wallace and returned it to the Tri-Cities 10 before being stripped from behind. Teammate Brandon Watt fell on it at the 1, and on the next play Carver quarterback Torrance McGee pushed
into the end zone.
The Tigers moved 80 yards in six plays to their third score, Thomas' 18-yard run. The big play on the drive was a third-down screen pass from McGee to Thomas that covered 37 yards.
Tri-Cities got on the board with a safety with just under three minutes left in the first half. A big return by Charles Middlebrooks gave the Bulldogs great starting field position, but they failed to make a first down and Chris Hernandez drilled a 27-yard field goal.
Down 32-5 in the fourth, Tri-Cities' Sam Van Pelt recovered a fumble in the end zone, and Kelton Franklin's 2-yard run gave the Bulldogs their only offensive touchdown.
Carver-Col. 12 6 7 7 -- 32
Tri-Cities 0 5 0 15 -- 20
C -- Jaquan Sanks 27 pass from Torrance McGee (kick failed)
C -- McGee 1 run (run failed)
C -- Danny Ryles 18 run (pass failed)
T -- Safety. Carver's Torrance tackled in end zone
T -- FG Chris Hernandez 27
C -- McGee 1 run (Tyrin Lewis kick)
C -- Ryles 4 run (Lewis kick)
T -- Sam Van Pelt recovered fumble in end zone (Hernandez kick)
T -- Kelton Franklin 2 run (DeMario Holland pass from Kareem Wallace)