MOULTRIE – The Colquitt County eighth- and seventh-grade football teams went on the road to Lowndes on Thursday to win their season-openers.
The eighth-graders had little trouble in a 42-6 victory while the 7th-grade team overcame an early 8-0 deficit to win 19-8.
In the eighth-grade game, Willie Almond ran 75 yards around the right end to open the scoring in the second quarter. Nick Pace ran in the 2-point conversion to put Colquitt up 8-0.
On the Packers’ next possession, Kam Williams hauled in a 23-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Brandon Rogers and Pace ran in the conversion to make it 16-0 at halftime.
The touchdown pass was set up by a 50-yard run by punter Ty Lamar.
The Vikings started the third quarter trying to pass, but the throw was intercepted by safety Coran Robinson.
Rogers then threw to Eli Mead who made a great catch at the 1-yard line. Pace ran it in from there and although the conversion failed, Colquitt led 22-0.
Lamar recovered a Lowndes fumble on the Vikings next possession and Chad White went off left tackle for a 30-yard touchdown run to make it 28-0.
Later in the third quarter, blitzing from his linebacker position, Jeremy Murray pressured the Vikings' quarterback to throw an interception to cornerback Jumier Pridgen.
Neko Fann then found tight end KJ Soloman in the end zone for a 25-yard touchdown pass. Fann ran in to convert the extra points to make it 36-0 at the end of the third quarter.
Aaron Bell recovered the ensuing kickoff to begin the fourth quarter. Under the mercy rule’s running clock, Colquitt County quarterback Ny Carr scampered 23 yards for the Packers final touchdown and a 42-0 lead.
Lowndes scored its only touchdown on a 70-yard run on its next possession.
“We played well compared to the little practice and preparation time that we have had due to the hot weather and rainy days,” said coach Steven Reynolds. “I was concerned about how we would react to the lack of practicing and game speed. “They responded with the victory. I'm pleased that every player got into the game to play. My assistant coaches manage that part very well.”
Jah'Boris “Juicy” Fuller scored three touchdowns and tallied over 150 yards rushing in the seventh-grade Packers’ victory.
The young Packers used a stable of running backs, including Dayshawn Brown, Antonio White, Winston Revels and Tyler Smith.
All of them had some success, but it was Fuller who managed to break free for the scores, including two touchdown runs over 50 yards each.
"I have a lot of confidence in all of our backs," coach Nate Madison said. "They all run hard, but my favorite thing about them is that they enjoy blocking for each other. They don't demand the ball all the time.
"Today it was Juicy who broke out. Another game it might be somebody else. It's a talented group."
Cam Harden handled most of the quarterbacking duties for the young Packers. Ethan Ramirez and Brett Fitzgerald shared the kicking duties. Ramirez performed the kickoffs and Fitzgerald capped off the scoring with a successful extra point kick, a rarity in middle school football.
Defensively, the visiting Packers earned turnovers when Ramsey Dennis intercepted a pass and Amari Wilson recovered two fumbles.
Ra'Quavion Kinsey forced a fumble and Antonio White forced a fumble and recorded a tackle-for-loss. Russell Flowers, Silvester Carolina and Jakari Byrd each recorded a tackle-for-loss and Carolina tacked on a quarterback sack.
The seventh- and eighth-grade Packers will return to Lowndes County next Thursday to take on North Lowndes, a combination of Pine Grove and Hahira Middle School students.