LOGANVILLE — Flowery Branch coach Chris Griffin said it wasn’t one thing, two things or even half-a-dozen things that led to his team’s lopsided loss against Loganville in the Region 8-AAAAA opener.
For the Falcons, there is a laundry list of issues to resolve ahead of what figures to be an even tougher matchup against region champion Lanier next week.
Quarterback Cam Perkins led four touchdown drives against the Falcons defense during the second quarter Friday night, and Loganville hammered Flowery Branch 35-0 at Red Devil Stadium. The Falcons had won the last five meetings with the Red Devils coming into the game.
Loganville (2-0, 1-0 region) tallied 319 yards of total offense, while Flowery Branch (1-1, 0-1) finished with 106 after being limited to only 27 yards in the first half.
Perkins completed 14 of 19 passes in the game for 207 yards, four touchdowns and an interception. Loganville receiver Richard Fraser hauled in five receptions for 119 yards and a touchdown, and also had a pair of interceptions on defense in the first quarter. Running back Darryl Giles added 73 rushing yards, 43 receiving yards and two touchdowns.
“A lot of things,” Griffin said of the Falcons’ weaknesses Friday night. “Blocking, tackling, lining up right, effort, knowing what to do, protecting the ball ... the list goes on.”
Fraser ended each of Flowery Branch’s first two drives by intercepting a pass from starting Falcons quarterback Jasen Johnson. He followed his second interception with a 39-yard reception on the first play of the Red Devils’ ensuing offensive series to get the ball down to the Falcons’ 22-yard line.
Perkins later connected with Giles on a 3-yard touchdown pass at the 11:19 mark in the second quarter to cap that eight-play, 61-yard drive and put Loganville on top 7-0 after the extra point.
The Falcons went three-and-out on their next series, and Loganville took over at its own 37 following a punt.
Perkins orchestrated a nine-play, 63-yard scoring drive this time, punctuated by a 17-yard touchdown pass to Shy Kim with 5:57 remaining in the first half. The Red Devils’ quarterback didn’t have to wait long to take another shot at the end zone.
The Falcons fumbled the ball right back to Loganville on the first play of their next offensive series.
Loganville took over at the Flowery Branch 10-yard line, and Perkins found Leo Fratesi for a 10-yard touchdown pass on the second play of the series with 5:08 on the clock.
“We’re a better team than what we showed tonight,” Griffin said. “Our guys will respond.
“We’ll find a way to bounce back. That’s the only option we’ve got right now.”
The Falcons turned to Kory Graham at quarterback on their next series, but his first drive under center ended when Kyle King was stopped short of the first-down marker on a fake punt.
Four plays later, Loganville boosted its lead to 28-0 when Giles broke off a 20-yard touchdown run on fourth-and-1 with 1:15 remaining before halftime.
The Red Devils tacked on their final points less than two minutes into the third quarter, when Perkins connected with Fraser for a 50-yard touchdown pass.
Special teams served as one of the few bright spots for Flowery Branch.
The Falcons started multiple drives in good field position, including one at the Loganville 29-yard line in the third quarter thanks to a long kickoff return by Malik Drayton. The Falcons offense lost 9 yards on that drive and turned the ball over on downs at the 38.
“There were some bright spots,” Griffin said. It’s hard to tell right now until we’re able to see the film and really look at it closely. I’m sure there’s going to be some good things we can build from.”