It was for a half against Dutchtown in the season opener two weeks ago. But then the Bears, trailing 16-7, reached out and swatted down the Bulldogs 42-16.
Then came Friday’s game at Northgate against the 2011 Region 3-AAAA champs. Granted, the Vikings graduated a lot on offense from last year. And granted the Vikings were dealing with a multitude of injuries. But once again, Griffin reached out and swatted away an opponent — jumping out to a 22-0 lead by the half before settling for a 35-6 win.
So far all the first two games have served to do is sell season tickets, which, by the way, are still on sale through Friday. Go see Mrs. East at Griffin High if you are interested.
Included in Griffin’s latest carnage was a two-sack night — there were a few other real vicious hits for the second week in a row — not to mention 320 yards of combined passing between starting quarterback Jaquez Parks (240 yards on 15-of-25 passing) and backup Anforne’ Stroud (80 yards on 5-of-5 passing). The duo combined Friday to hit eight different receivers: Quay Mangham (4-140), Jordan Colbert (6-69), Montico Dodson (1-52), Keyston Fuller (3-27), Devontae Freeman (2-21), Trey Willis (1-12), Justin Goodard (2-5) and Moses Mayes (1-0).
Don’t forget about the five touchdown runs on the season by Malik Miller or the three touchdown passes by Parks — a number that could be much higher without drops or tackles inside the two.
However, perhaps the most impressive thing about Griffin’s victory on Friday is that it was penalty free. While Northgate committed seven penalties, Griffin didn’t tally a single one. Can’t remember the last time Griffin had a game like that. It was a welcome relief after last week’s 16-penalty game.
The good news this weekend, however, wasn’t all reserved for the Steve DeVoursney-coached Griffin Bears.
The Nick-Davis-coached Spalding Jaguars posted a 20-13 win Friday against visiting Rutland.
It means Spalding (1-0-1) — which battled then Class AA No. 2-state ranked Lamar County to a 3-all tie in th season opener two weeks ago — is undefeated through the first two games of the season for the first time since 2007 when then Tommy Gilstrap-coached Spalding posted wins in their first three games and four of their first five games.
After struggling in the opener this year, Spalding’s offense posted two scores Friday. The first, set up by an Anthony Bush interception, culminated on a 24-yard pass from Powell Krepps to Bush three plays later. The other came on a 77-yard run by Brandon Thomas. In-between the Jags dented the scoreboard on a 46-yard interception return by Garrett Bell.
The Jags had four interceptions on the night to give them five for the season.
While the Jags are off this week, Griffin hosts Jonesboro in a rematch of an opening-round Class AAAA game the Bears rallied to win 47-43 on a pair of touchdown passes from Parks to Freeman in the final 2:21. The rematch — between teams which have similar lineups to a year ago — should be a barn burner.
John Sullivan is the sports editor at the Griffin Daily News.