pcloudyn.png
Sunday September 27th, 2020 12:59AM

Branch holds off Tigers in high-scoring affair

By Tim Whitmire

DAWSONVILLE — This one was a classic battle of two potent offenses that couldn’t stop each other. 

Flowery Branch and Dawson County traded punches in the second half and racked up more than 1,000 combined yards and 87 points but the Falcons rallied from ten points down twice in the contest, scoring 21 unanswered points to down the Tigers 45-42 at Tiger Stadium on Friday.

"We got a couple of key stops when we needed them late," Flowery Branch coach Ben Hall said on the Hardy Chevy Scoreboard Show. "We're growing each week. I'm just proud of the guys pulling it out."

Falcon quarterback David Renard compiled 387 yards through the air, going 15-for-21 with a touchdown, while Jaizen Ellingham racked up five touchdowns and 131 rushing yards. Connor Larson was Renard's favorite target, catching eight passes for 182 yards. Sal Sengson hauled in four Renard passes for 134 yards.  

After managing only seven points in their opening week, the Tigers got their historically high scoring offense back on track behind the play of junior quarterback Zack Holtzclaw. He connected with seven different receivers, going 24-for-31 with 375 yards and four touchdowns. 

The Branch, however, scored first, quickly taking the opening drive in for Ellingham’s first score, a one-yard run, with 8:18 in the first quarter.

Dawson County matched the Falcons' offensive precision by answering with consecutive scores, Holtzclaw passes to Tyler Lane and Jaden Gibson for 26 and 11 yards, to take a 13-7 lead. 

After the Falcons responded with a 36-yard Maddox Trujillo field goal, Holtzclaw connected with Isaiah Grindle for a 53-yard score to push the Tigers ahead, 20-10, with 7:21 remaining in the half.

The first half offense was not complete, however, as the Falcons assembled scoring drives of 70 and 65 yards to claim a 24-20 halftime lead. 

The Tigers opened up the second half with a pair of scoring drives on their first two possessions to reclaim a 10-point advantage. The opening drive was the result of Holtzclaw’s fourth touchdown pass, a 28-yard strike to Tray Cohen. Dawson’s second drive was set up by a Gibson interception on the ensuing Falcon drive. The Tigers quickly advanced the 45 yards for a Grindle rushing score of 3-yards to build another ten-point lead 34-24 with 6:52 remaining in the third.

The Branch completed its final offensive attacks with three consecutive scoring drives that culminated with Ellingham scores of 16, 10, and 4 yards and building a 45-34 lead with 6:05 remaining in the game.

The Tigers mounted one final scoring attack with an 80-yard drive that ended in a Gibson score -- his second -- this time from the ground, a 17-yard run with 3:00 remaining.  Gibson scampered in for the two-point conversion to cut the score to a field goal, 45-42.

Flowery Branch ran the clock down to 33 seconds with a 59-yard drive that ended on downs at the Tiger one-yard line and after gaining a first down, an errant Tiger snap with nine-seconds left was scooped up by the Falcons.  

© Copyright 2020 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Branch holds off Tigers in high-scoring affair
This one was a classic battle of two potent offenses that couldn’t stop each other.
12:46AM ( 50 minutes ago )
Bluff off to program's first-ever 2-0 start, rolls past CHS 49-14
Cherokee Bluff is 2-0 for the first time in program history. The Bears piled up 413 total yards of offense en route to 49-14 win over Chestatee (0-1) in the War Eagles’ season opener.
11:47PM ( 1 hour ago )
Vikings rally to beat West Hall 30-22
The Vikings (1-0) rallied from a 14-point deficit in the first quarter, 445 yards of offense to knock off West Hall, 30-22, at Spartan Field on Friday.
11:46PM ( 1 hour ago )
Sports
Softball: Commerce, Jefferson, Union take big region wins; Thursday roundup
Commerce, Jefferson, and Union County all took big region wins on Thursday in girls softball action around the area...
6:45AM ( 18 hours ago )
Volleyball: GHS drops region opener to Lambert; LCA holds off Bluff
The Gainesville girls volleyball team opened its Region 6-7A schedule Thursday with a tough loss to host Lambert...
6:28AM ( 19 hours ago )
Air It Out: Montgomery, Perry talk about Friday's contest in Oakwood
Our sixth episode of the Air It Out series will look at the East Hall-West Hall game.
1:55PM ( 1 day ago )
High School Sports
5 Things: What we learned from Week 1 of high school football
Despite everything that has occurred in 2020, Week 1 of the high school football season did indeed take place, and with it came some eye-opening performances.
8:30AM ( 4 days ago )
Gainesville's Watson signs $160-million contract extension with Texans
Gainesville's Deshaun Watson is now the second-highest paid quarterback in the NFL.
9:46AM ( 5 days ago )
North Hall drops opener to Paulding County
Paulding County spoiled North Hall's opener with a 24-7 win over the Trojans at The Brickyard Saturday afternoon...
2:18PM ( 6 days ago )
Friday Game Night
Branch's comeback falls short; drops opener in Corky Kell Classic
Despite pulling within three twice in the fourth quarter, Flowery Branch (0-1) fell, 38-28, to St. Pius X in the Corky Kell Classic at Falcons Field.
By Nate Roys
12:27AM ( 1 week ago )
Peachtree TV picks up new Corky Kell showdown between Branch-St. Pius
One program's loss is another's gain. Peachtree TV has picked up the Flowery Branch-St. Pius game scheduled for Friday at Falcons Field after the Mill Creek-Parkview game was canceled Wednesday due to a COVID-19 outbreak...
3:30PM ( 1 week ago )
Two-a-Days: Falcons looking to make jump to elite status
A move into a new-and-improved Region 8-4A and having to replace several key starters on defense may well prove if Flowery Branch has reached elite status...
7:03AM ( 1 month ago )
2020 Region RunDown Series: 8-4A football
The newest series on AccessWDUN, our 2020 region rundown webcast, will look at each region involving northeast Georgia area teams as we, hopefully, begin preparations for the upcoming 2020-21 sports season. This week we will dive into Region 8-4A, which features area powerhouses Jefferson and Flowery Branch, along with Chestatee and East Hall...
3:09PM ( 4 months ago )
Flowery Branch to hold virtual spring practice
Flowery Branch football coach Ben Hall is getting creative during the COVID-19 pandemic.
10:06AM ( 4 months ago )