Gilmer Scores 21 Points In First 90 Seconds + Shuts Out Canton For Homecoming Win
[By Anthony Hawthorne, Special to ETSN.fm]
GILMER -- It took the Gilmer Buckeyes nearly two months to play a game in front of their home crowd at Buckeye Stadium.
Home, away, neutral field, it doesn’t seem to matter.
The Buckeyes started fast, as they seem to always do, and never looked back in a 70-0 demolition of the Canton Eagles in front of a Homecoming and Yamboree crowd.
McLane Carter passed for 5 touchdowns in the first half, completing 11 of 15 passes for 233 yards. Blake Lynch and Kris Boyd combined for 6 first half scores.
Gilmer (7-0, 2-0) got on the board early and often, putting up 21 points in the games first 1:24 and kept the foot on the gas from that point.
Following their narrow 41-35 victory over Tatum, Gilmer defeated their next four opponents by a score of 252-30, leading to worries about keeping the Buckeyes' offense sharp as they enter the final stretch leading into the playoffs.
“I’m worried,” head coach Jeff Traylor said. “They’ve been great in practice, that’s our best shot right now. We’ve had some great good-on-good sessions, 7-on-7, one on one's, great team sessions. It’s a lot more good-on-good than we’ve done in a while. The risk of that is injury. So far, we’ve been lucky. We’re going to need to be tested soon.”
On the game's opening play, starting at their own 47-yard line, Carter found a wide-open Boyd on a wheel route for a 53-yard touchdown strike.
Canton (4-3, 0-2) was not as successful. Its first play from was caught and fumbled, with Blevin Burns recovering and giving the Buckeyes the ball at the Eagles' 13-yard line.
It took Blake Lynch just one play from there as the Baylor commit took a Carter screen pass and scored from 13 yards away.
The Buckeyes' special teams got in on the act at that point. Chase Tate took a punt 56-yards to the house, giving Gilmer a quick 21-0 lead in front of a packed house in the first of just two home games on the season.
“They were awesome,” Traylor said of the crowd. “That home side was packed, people everywhere, it was awesome. Fans have always been great to us. Great community that loves football. They’re always supportive”
The blackflag defense forced a three-and-out on the next possession, and it took the Buckeyes two plays to find the end zone on the ensuing drive.
A pair of 37-yard runs, the first coming from Boyd which set up Lynch for his second score of the night.
The Buckeyes had an unusual three-and-out on their next possession, but they made up for it with scores on their next four possessions.
Three of those came through the air from Carter, He faced little to no pressure, giving him the chance to find numerous receivers, 11 of which had catches on the night.
Carter hit Lynch for a nine-yard gain on the next series, then followed with a 29-yard strike for a touchdown, pushing the Buckeye lead to 35-0 near the end of the first quarter.
A 31-yard run from Jamel Jackson, his only carry of the night, set up Lynch again on a third-and-1 carry from six yards away. It was his fourth and final score of the night.
Lynch has an impressive 19 scores on the season. He has scored twice on passes, has seven receiving touchdowns, nine touchdowns on the ground and a defensive score.
Carter collected his fourth and fifth scoring passes of the half on the Buckeyes' final two possessions. Two completions from Lynch moved the ball to the Eagle 25 where Carter found Boyd for a score on the next play.
Boyd collected his third touchdown of the night, and the second from the Buckeye special teams unit, when he collected a Canton punt and raced 73 yards to the house to make it 56-0.
Carter closed out the first half scoring. He found Nick Smith on a 43-yard pass with just :38 remaining before the break for a 63-0 lead.
Each of Gilmer's seven scoring drives in the first half took four plays or less.
Following a 4-0 start, Canton has struggled heavily. It has lost the three games since a quarterback and Louisiana-Monroe commit Chandler Eiland suffered a season-ending injury.
The Eagles struggled to find any rhythm offensively, completing just 12 of 32 passes for 61 yards.
Canton returns to action next week where they will look for their first District 5-4A Division II victory at home against Melissa.
Gilmer will look to remain perfect on the season as they travel to Bullard.