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Canes Advance to 2nd Round

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Canes Advance to 2nd Round

Photo Credit: Sports Furnace Athletics

Photo Credit: Sports Furnace Athletics

Photo Credit: Sports Furnace Athletics

Photo Credit: Sports Furnace Athletics

Ryan McCrary and Thomas Smith

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On Friday, November 9, the Cartersville Purple Hurricanes rolled over the Stephens County Indians 34-7 in the 1st round of the GHSA 4A state playoffs.

Cartersville started off slow and struggled to get things clicking on offense, with limited success on the ground and receivers struggling to catch passes.

Stephens County came into Weinman stadium with a game plan consisting of running the ball and chewing clock. The Indians were able to successfully move the ball on the ground, then scored on a beautiful 16-yard pass from quarterback Kenny Colwell to wide receiver Kamon Taylor.

Cartersville finally found their rhythm after the Indians’ initial touchdown, moving the ball downfield by utilizing senior running back Marcus Gary’s legs and plenty of screen passes. Cartersville’s first successful drive ended with a 14-yard screen pass to Dadrian Dennis, resulting in a touchdown to tie the game, 7-7.

On the next Stephens County possession, the Hurricane defense stepped up as a sophomore linebacker, Harrison Allen, forced a fumble which senior linebacker Sunni Moorehead recovered with 4:09 left in the 1st half.

The offense made sure they made the most of their great field position. On 4th and 20, Tee Webb put the ball right on the money as he threw a 38-yard touchdown pass to junior Marquail Coaxum to put the Canes up 13-7 at the end of the 1st half. This was the beginning of the end to Stephens County’s season.

In the 2nd half, Cartersville got back to playing dominant Hurricane football. Marcus Gary added two rushing touchdowns in the 3rd quarter to extend Cartersville’s lead to 27-7.

Stephens County did a great job of running the football in the 1st half but didn’t have the same success in the following half of the game. The Indians struggled to gain yards through the air, and sophomore Hurricane linebacker, Harrison Allen, intercepted Kenny Colwell at the end of the 3rd quarter.

Cartersville continued to excel on offense in the 4th quarter as sophomore Devonte Ross took a screen pass 26 yards into the end zone to put the Canes up 34-7 and officially ended Stephens County’s season.

Cartersville started slowly, but picked it up and took control of the game after the 1st quarter. Once the Canes achieved a 13-7 lead, they really started to dominate Stephens County on both sides of the ball.

Sophomore kicker, Oscar Hernandez, struggled, missing two extra points and having multiple kickoffs bounce out of bounds. Expect him to bounce back and have success throughout the playoffs.

Tee Webb has been magnificent for Cartersville this season, and if he can continue to play at this level, the Canes will be on their way to claiming their 3rd state championship in the last 4 years. Cartersville takes on Ridgeland next week in Round 2 of the playoffs.

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