In what could have been a trap game, the Heard County High School football team came through with a convincing, 56-7 win against Chattahoochee County on Friday night at Staples Stadium in Franklin.
The Braves (4-1, 3-0 Region 5-AA) were coming off a pair of big region wins in the past two games and have another one next week, but stayed focused and were able to take care of business.
"I was really proud of the way they practiced Monday through Thursday. They seemed focused coming off two big wins against Bremen and Kendrick. You worry about a letdown and not playing well," Heard County coach Tim Barron said. "They went out and after one series on [offense] got back to clicking and played well on defense."
The defense has continued to progress this season and put together another solid performance, allowing just seven points and 75 yards of total offense.
"I'm very excited about where we're at right now defensively and where we're trying to get. I was also excited about how well the defense played. Offensively, we had one series to open the [game] we were kind of in a lull and were a little flat," Barron said. "Very excited about the kids showing maturity to come out, work on our game plan, execute and do the things we've been asking them to do all year."
Duranta Dunson continued his strong performances with 141 yards on nine carries — just under 16 yards per rush — and three touchdowns on the night to lead the way. Ta Freeland added 77 yards on eight rushes and two scores, while Jonathon Hunt was 6-of-11 through the air for 135 yards and a touchdown pass to Taylor Smith. Austin Barron rounded out the scoring with a 24-yard run in the third quarter that put Heard County up 56-0.
Next week the Braves travel down to Manchester for a tough region battle.
"No doubt, next week is going to be a big game. All of us are in the playoff hunt, all of us are going for one of those spots. We think a lot of the Manchester program. It's awfully difficult to go there and play. It's always physical," Barron said. "You know that going into it."