BAKER — There were no surprises at Baker School's Doug Griffith Memorial Stadium on Friday as the undefeated Gators hosted a winless Franklin County team for Homecoming 2013. Baker scored two touchdowns in the first three-and-a-half minutes of play and didn't look back on the way to a 54-13 win.
BAKER — There were no surprises at Baker School's Doug Griffith Memorial Stadium on Friday as the undefeated Gators hosted a winless Franklin County team for Homecoming 2013.
Baker scored two touchdowns in the first three-and-a-half minutes of play and didn't look back on the way to a 54-13 win.
The score was 47-7 at the half and the second half was played with a running clock to help ease the pain of the visiting Seahawks.
The Gators (8-0) scored on all but their last offensive possession. And for good measure Troy Smith returned the interception of a Franklin County pass 55 yards giving Baker a defensive score.
"It was just a good read," Smith said of his score. "Once I caught the ball I just had to take it to the house."
Things started badly for the Seahawks (0-8) when they were forced into a three-and-out on the opening possession of the game. Things got worse when the Franklin County punt didn't make it back to the line of scrimmage and went in the books as a negative six yard kick.
The poor punt set the Gators up at the Franklin County 27-yard line.
Two D.J. Thomas runs later Baker was up 6-0. Malcolm Griffith's extra point made it 7-0 with 8:47 left in the first quarter.
The Seahawks fumbled away the ensuing kick off and David Oglesby recovered the live ball for Baker at the Franklin County 25.
Jon Beck hit Kodi Moen with a 25-yard touchdown pass on the next play as the Gators scored their second touchdown in 16 seconds to go up 14-0.
Before the end of the first quarter Brandon Engler scored from two yards out and Austin Martin scored from on a 23-yard run.
Thomas scored his second touchdown of the game and 21st of the season from 57 yards out with 10:06 left in the half to put the Gators up 35-0.
Thomas' long touchdown run was his last carry of the game as Gator Coach Matt Brunson quickly started to empty the bench and reward backups with some well earned playing time.
Even in limited playing time Thomas came up big rushing for 159 yards on nine carries. Thomas now has 1,480 yards rushing on the season.
The Seahawks broke into the scoring column against the Baker reserves when Alex Causey scored from 48-yards out with 7:38 left in the half.
Another short field set up a 10-yard touchdown pass from Beck to Jonathan Gatewood with 4:58 left in the half.
Smith's pick six with 1:26 left in the half pushed the lead to 47-7.
Baker had 283 yards in total offense in the first half and six different players scored.
The final Gator score on Baker's first offensive play when Beck hit Wilder Kersey with a 38-yard pass. Josh Mayhew added the extra point.
Franklin County fullback Trenton Lee scored from a yard out in the final seconds of the game. The Gators declined a holding penalty against the Seahawks on the previous play, which allowed Franklin County to punch the ball in for the score.
Beck finished the night with 100 yards in total offense as he threw for 73 yards and ran for 27 yards.
The win was nice, but Brunson had already turned his attention to next week's District 1-1A showdown with Northview as the victory celebration was taking place on the field.
"Our guys had a business like approach in the first half and did well like we try to do each week," he said. "We've had an open date before Northview the last couple of years so we wanted to bring an opponent in this year and it went well. Now we will get ready for Northview.
"We are 8-0 and everything we've set out to do we have done. Now we will be playing over and Northview and we invite everybody to come out and support us next week because we will be playing for the district championship and home field advantage in the playoffs.
Randy Dickson is the Crestview News Bulletin’s sports editor. Email him at email@example.com, tweet him @BigRandle, or call 682-6524.