JOHNS CREEK -- The postgame handshake done, and not feeling the cold air, the players on the Warner Robins football team grouped together, raised their hands and started yelling the two words: “Round three! Round three! Round three!”
The celebration showed again how far the Demons had come and what else had been accomplished by a 20-6 win at Chattahoochee in the GHSA Class AAAA playoffs.
They have now won two playoff games. They won two games, period, last season.
“I appreciate you reminding me about that,” Warner Robins head coach Bryan Way said with a smile. “It’s a testament to our assistant coaches and our players, especially our seniors. They made up their minds that they weren’t going to let that happen again. From the first of December they’ve worked their behinds off.”
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Warner Robins advanced by knocking off the defending state champion convincingly. Chattachoochee, which had won 10 straight, scored 65 points in its first-round playoff win last week.
But Warner Robins outgained Chattahoochee 265-37 in the first half. And the lead could have been bigger than 13-0. A holding penalty negated a touchdown run on the Demons’ second drive. They ended up missing a short field goal. The Demons fumbled the inside the 5 on their third drive, wasting a 42-yard run by Dede Wright.
But on the first play of the next drive Wright hit the hole over center and was gone, 66 yards for the touchdown. Wright ended up with just three carries in the game, but they totaled 113 yards.
“He is probably our best home-run threat,” Way said.
One drive later, the Demons ran the ball six times, then surprised Chattahoochee with a pass. Akeem Taylor got open downfield, and Ty Odom hit him in stride for a 42-yard touchdown.
Brian Sutton took over in the second half for Warner Robins, rushing for a 4-yard touchdown and then serving as the workhorse as the Demons ran down the clock. The Cougars finally reached the end zone in the fourth quarter, but the Demons made a number of big stops in the second half to cinch the game.
“We didn’t play well all the time, but they played hard,” Way said.