BUFORD — Whatever happened to the defending state champs last week has been forgotten.
After falling to Class 7A top-10 ranked North Cobb in Game 1, Buford found its rushing attack and rolled to a 39-6 win over Carver-Atlanta Friday night at Tom Riden Stadium.
It was big. When you have a loss like that early, we didn’t play the game we wanted to play last week,” Buford coach Bryant Appling said. “We had a great week of practice.”
The Wolves rushing attack looked more like itself, racking up 228 yards rushing with 89 of those coming from Victor Venn. Venn also added two touchdowns.
But it was a slow grind early on as the Wolves led 7-0 after one – Gabe Ervin Jr, 31 yards and a TD, walked in from five yards out with 4:21 left.
Then the Wolves reeled off 17 unanswered points in the second quarter, including a Venn one-yard one, Christian Butler one-yard dive, and an Alex Mata 40-yard field goal to take control, 25-0 at the half.
Tobias Fletcher scored the lone Panther touchdown early in the third quarter when he picked off Jarvis Evans pass and returned it 93 yards for the score.
Meanwhile, Buford’s Venn broke loose with 7:35 to go in the third period for a 43-yard scramble to paydirt, and Mason McCranic, just over a minute later, scooped a Panther fumble and returned it three yards for the touchdown.
The Wolves defense held Carver to just 34 rushing yards and minus 1 passing.
“We went back to the basics, just running the football, stopping the run and those things came out tonight,” Appling said. “So, we played a more complete game, but we’re still not where we want to be. But we are a more complete team as of now.”
The Wolves (1-1) will play host to former Region 8-5A rival Clarke Central on Friday.