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South Paulding football opens season with victory
by E. Marcel Pourtout
mpourtout@neighbornewspapers.com
August 27, 2014 12:57 PM | 1188 views | 0 0 comments | 3 3 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff / Ted Mayer<br>South Paulding running back Kameron Watts (20) runs against Sprayberry during the Spartans’ 24-19 home victory last Friday. The junior ran for a team-high 37 yards and a touchdown.
Staff / Ted Mayer
South Paulding running back Kameron Watts (20) runs against Sprayberry during the Spartans’ 24-19 home victory last Friday. The junior ran for a team-high 37 yards and a touchdown.
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In a closely contested battle between two emerging Class 5A programs, South Paulding earned a 24-19 home victory over Sprayberry Friday night in the season opener for both squads.

“I’m proud of my kids and the improvements they’ve made in the past two weeks,” South Paulding coach Ed Koester said after the contest. “Our defense played so well and made some key plays.”

Senior Jake Oglesby, in his first career start for the Spartans, threw for a game-high 229 yards and a touchdown. The South Paulding offense outgained Sprayberry’s in yardage, 293 to 239, and in first downs, 18 to 11.

“It feels great to come out here as a team with a victory,” Oglesby said. “We worked on our uptempo offense all week during practice, driving the ball up the field for four or five yards a play.”

The Spartans took the opening drive of the contest for a touchdown, scoring on a one-yard quarterback sneak by Oglesby.

The Yellow Jackets scored their first points of the game with 4:01 left in the first half when Rodrigo Blankenship converted a 31-yard field goal attempt.

Sprayberry took a 10-7 lead with 2:45 left in the first half when defensive lineman Jabari Zuniga intercepted a pass and returned it 68 yards for a touchdown.

The Yellow Jackets weren’t able to hold their lead as an eight-yard touchdown run by South Paulding running back Kameron Watts made the score 14-10 heading into halftime. Watts ran for a team-high 37 yards rushing.

South Paulding scored the lone points of the third quarter on a successful 35-yard field goal attempt by Brittany Havenner.

The Spartans scored their final points of the game with 8:17 left in the contest when Oglesby completed a 26-yard TD pass to Anthony Brown.

Trailing 24-19 with 3:30 left in the game, the Yellow Jackets attempted a game-winning drive from their own 31-yard line but the Spartans’ defense forced a turnover on downs, securing the victory.

South Paulding returns to action on Sept. 5 against Villa Rica.

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