Dacula 34, Lanier 10
In the span of two plays, the Class AAAAAA No. 1 Dacula went from near disaster to completely changing the momentum of the game against No. 5 Lanier. It was the key sequence in a 34-10 win that sewed up the Region 8 championship for the Falcons.
Holding a 7-3 lead, the Dacula defense had withstood a 14-play Lanier drive and was starting at its own 8. On first down, quarterback Jarrett Jenkins was sacked for a 7-yard loss and barely escaped a safety.
But the next play shaped the rest of the game. Jenkins dropped into the endzone under heavy pressure. Amid the chaos, Jenkins spotted Chris Scott standing all alone around the 40, with no defenders within 20 yards on a busted play. Jenkins threw a high spiral to Scott, who caught it, turned and ran the rest of the way for a touchdown,
“Their corners love to blitz when they get an out route,” Scott said. “As soon I saw the out route, I hit the blocks and just took off and Jarrett threw it up and I was there. It was nerve-wracking, because if I drop this, it’s horrible.”
The 99-yard touchdown pass – a school record — with 2:45 left stunned the Senior Night crowd and seemed to give the Longhorns a gut punch from which they never recovered.
“That was the play right there. From here we kept fighting, kept hitting them hard, hitting them in the mouth,” Jenkins said.
Lanier went 3-and-out on its next possession and Dacula responded by driving 50 yards in three plays. A 32-yard completion to Kyle Efford advanced the ball to the 2 and Efford powered in for a touchdown on the next play to make it 21-3 at the half.
Dacula improved to 9-0, 3-0 in Region 8. Lanier dropped to 8-1, 3-1. The victory gave Dacula its fourth straight region championship.
The momentum continued in the third quarter. Lanier went 3-and-out on its first three possessions of the second half and Dacula converted two of those into touchdowns. The result was a 34-3 Dacula lead and a running clock for the third period.
Dacula’s first third-quarter score came after Lanier failed on a fake punt, the ball falling incomplete. The Falcons scored on the next play when Jenkins threw to Konata Mumpfield for a 27-yard touchdown. The Falcons scored again with 1:09 left when Efford ran it in from 17 yards.
Lanier finally scored a touchdown with 5:30 remaining on a 1-yard run from Taj Barnes.
Jenkins completed 10 of 17 passes for 28 yards and three touchdowns. Trenton Jones carried 10 times for 91 yards. Kaleb Edwards caught four passes for 72 yards and Mumphfield caught three passes for 45 yards and two touchdowns.
Lanier began the game with the aggressive bent. The Longhorns used an offside kick to open play and Nahil Perkins recovered at the 48. Lanier drove to the 1, but had to settle for Mason Mancilla’s 20-yard field goal.
“We told our guys to watch the onside kick,” Dacula coach Clint Jenkins said. “Great call by them and kind of threw us out balance for a little bit. We were fending them off and couldn’t really get going. But felt like we settled down and played much better in the second half. “
Dacula took a 7-3 lead with 10:14 left in the half when Jenkins new a 14-yard pass to Mumpfield.
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