Cedar Grove Returns To State Title Game Under New Head Coach, Defeats Appling County 27-6
New coach, no problem for the Cedar Grove Saints as they are back in the Georgia High School Association 3A state title game with a chance to win their fourth championship in six years as new head coach, John Adams is the third consecutive coach to lead the Saints to the title game as they defeated Appling County 27-6 on Friday night.
At the start of the game, after the Saints had a touchdown on the first play of the game called back and would later turn the ball over on downs, Appling County looked to gain early momentum as they had success on the ground beating the Saints on the edge. The Pirates would strike first with a field goal and would take a 3-0 lead in the first quarter.
In the second quarter, a key play would seemingly swing things in favor of Cedar Grove as a Dayson Griffis pass to Dawson Griffis would end with the later Griffis fumbling the ball while diving and stretching the across the goal line and the officials would rule it a touchback, turning the ball over to the Saints, who would capitalize with a rushing touchdown by Rashad Dubinion on the ensuing possession as they would take a 6-3 lead.
In the third quarter, the Saints would add to their lead as Jamar Graham would connect with Trevon Ferrell for a touchdown as Cedar Grove would go up 13-3. The Pirates would add a field goal later, but in the fourth quarter, the Saints would get two more touchdown passes from Graham as he would hit Janiran Bonner for a score and Ferrell for a second time in which they would take a 27-6 lead which would be the final score.
Although Adams has more than enough reason to celebrate the fact that he has led his team to a state title game in his first season as head coach, for him, it is all about his players. “I feel like these kids really deserve this opportunity. We have some real good players, a real good ball club and real good tradition in a program so next week is going to be feeling like home. It’s going to feel real good,” Adams said after the win.
As the Saints were able to pull away for the 21 point win, Adams said when it came to adjustments that they made, it was about taking away Appling County’s game plan to help them gain leverage in the areas they wanted. “We just felt like if we got them to pass the ball, we had a real good opportunity to be successful tonight. We got them out of their game plan (run attack on the edge) and when we got them out of it, offense did a good job of outscoring them to get them to pass. When that happened, it was for the taking at that point,” Adams said.