Athens coach Cody Gross has talked about his team peaking at the right time. It certainly looks like the Golden Eagles are doing just that, as they completely dominated Buckhorn in a 62-14 victory in the first round of the Class 6A playoffs Friday night.
Athens scored on seven of its first eight possessions in the game, and probably would have scored on all eight except they let the clock run out in the first half while inside Buckhorn's 20 yard line already holding a 41-0 lead.
The Golden Eagles finished the game with 399 rushing yards and 499 total yards.
The Athens defense was just as dominant, as it held Buckhorn to just 43 total yards in the first half. Buckhorn standout wide receiver Riley Irwin had just two catches in the game, and they both came in the fourth quarter long after Athens had pulled its starters.
Athens wasted no time getting on the scoreboard. After holding Buckhorn to a three and out to start the game, the Golden Eagles drove 56 yards in five plays, finishing the drive with a 10-yard Tokey Porter touchdown run. Kevin Jurado added the extra point.
Buckhorn against went three and out, and Athens once again scored, as Jordan Scott scored the first of his three rushing touchdowns, this one a 2-yard run.
Scott capped off Athens' next drive with a 31-yard touchdown run that put the Golden Eagles up 21-0 after one quarter. He then scored on a 3-yard run early in the second quarter to give Athens a 28-point lead.
After rushing for three touchdowns, Scott's arm did the work on Athens' next two scores. The junior quarterback threw a 49-yard touchdown pass to Braden Gross midway through the second quarter, and then he gave the Golden Eagles a 41-point lead with a 5-yard touchdown pass to Wyatt Maclin.
Athens increased the lead to 48 points on a 64-yard touchdown run by Julius Mayberry in the first minute of the second half.
Buckhorn finally got on the board early in the fourth quarter on a 15-yard touchdown pass from Brandon McNeal to Irwin, but Athens immediately answered when A'vonte' Thompson ran the ensuing kickoff back 87 yards for a touchdown.
Athens got its final score of the night on an 80-yard touchdown run by Dylan Roper. Buckhorn's final score came on a 35-yard touchdown pass from McNeal to Lyric Gurley.
Scott only played the first half for Athens, but still finished the game with 90 yards rushing, 98 yards passing and five total touchdowns.
Athens will travel to play Clay-Chalkville in the second round of the Class 6A playoffs next week. Clay-Chalkville defeated Helena 17-0 Friday night.