Oconee down, North Oconee Titans next on plate for Bulldogs’ dinner

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Morgan Memorial Hospital sold "Pink Out" shirts as part of a fundraiser for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Photo special

Morgan Memorial Hospital is selling “Pink Out” shirts as part of a fundraiser for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Photo special

Dogs Pink Out! The Morgan County vs. North Oconee game tomorrow night has been designated a “Pink Out,” recognizing October as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The Touchdown Club is hosting Morgan Memorial Hospital, who is selling “Pink” shirts. All proceeds from the sale of shirts will fund free mammograms at MMH. Short-sleeve shirts are $13 and long-sleeve shirts are $16. Contact the hospital at 706-752-2169 to buy a shirt before Friday, but they will also be on sale during the game. Come out in pink to support the Morgan County Bulldogs and the fight against breast cancer!

By Nick Nunn, Staff Writer

Tomorrow, the Morgan County Bulldogs will face last year’s 8-AAA region leader, the North Oconee Titans.

The Titans’ 2012 record was 9-1 in the regular season, beating every 8-AAA opponent – including Morgan County, who fell to North Oconee 7-35 – before reaching the second round of state playoffs, where they lost to eventual 2012 AAA State Champion, the Buford Wolves.

So far this year, the Titans are 3-1 in the regular season, with their only loss occurring against St. Pious, AAA State Runner-Up in 2012.

Morgan County High School (MCHS) Head Football Coach Bill Malone acknowledges that North Oconee will more than likely be the stiffest competition that the Bulldogs will face during the regular season, but he has definite goals for the game.

“I’d like to see us play with a good amount of enthusiasm throughout the game,” said Coach Malone.

“They match up well against what we like to do offensively,” said Malone about the Titans’ defense.

Coach Malone stated that he would like to see Morgan County be able to maintain possession of the ball as much as possible in order to control the time of the North Oconee offensive drives.

Malone noted that he has “been getting great plays out of the defensive line” and that the secondary players are increasingly comfortable in their roles.

During last week’s game, the Bulldogs incurred fewer penalties, which Malone acknowledges as an improvement due to increased concentration on the part of the players.

Another goal for Malone is to be able to get through a game without any injuries. One of the most noticeable injuries from last week’s game was the knee injury that Trent Hawk suffered early in the game.

As of Monday, Coach Malone did not know the extent of the damage done to Hawk’s knee – the same one that he injured during his sophomore year – but Malone hopes that they will receive a good report from the doctors soon.

Brantley Frost, who stepped into the quarterback position during the Oconee game after Hawk’s injury, received high marks from Coach Malone, saying that he “managed the game well” after Hawk came out.

“He took what he was supposed to do and did it,” said Malone. “We’re looking forward to seeing how well he’ll do as a starter.”

Unbeknownst to most, Marquis Benton set a record for career rushing yards at MCHS since 1994 with 2,815 yards rushed since 2010, his first season with the Dogs.

Coach Malone explained that, prior to 1994, offensive stats were not kept regularly, but, since then, those numbers have been recorded carefully.

Benton has had a total of 457 carries since 2010, setting an average of 6.16 yards per carry.

With 33 touchdowns under his belt as well, Benton is also knocking on the touchdown record of 38 touchdowns, which is currently held by Cameron Kiplinger, who was also the previous rushing leader with 2,712 yards.

“That was one of his individual goals,” said Malone, who also complimented the Benton’s improved defensive performances as of late.

Malone also stated that he “expects the same performance each week from [Benton].”

In the coming weeks, keep an eye on Benton’s touchdowns, as he closes in on the MCHS rushing touchdown record.

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