1025gruhnAUDLakeview Academy coach Matthew Gruhn discusses his team's 47-7 loss to Commerce on Friday.
1025orsborneAUDCommerce running back Deon Orsborne discusses his team's 47-7 win against Lakeview Academy on Friday.
The Commerce High football team isn’t letting a bad start to its season keep it from earning a berth in Class A state playoffs.
The Tigers stayed in postseason contention with a 47-7 win against Lakeview Academy on Friday at Jock Horner Field in Gainesville.
The win evened Commerce’s region record at 2-2, which moves the Tigers into a tie with Social Circle for third place in Region 8-A.
The loss dropped Lakeview Academy to 0-4 in region play in its first year of varsity football.
"They’re a very physical, well-coached team," Lakeview Academy coach Matthew Gruhn said. "They come right at you and they’re very hard to stop."
Commerce (3-5) dominated Lakeview on both sides of the ball, gaining 417 total yards while allowing only 160. The Tigers also earned 13 first downs to Lakeview’s four, led mostly by an efficient running game.
"We just came out here to get a win," Commerce running back Deon Orsborne said. "We were tired of all this losing we’ve been doing, and it was time to bounce back."
Lakeview (1-5, 0-4) also ran the ball most of the night, averaging 5.2 yards per carry, capped by a 62-yard touchdown by Austin White in the fourth quarter.
The Lions’ passing game struggled, though, as they could only connect twice for 3 yards. Although Commerce only had three completions, it totaled 125 total yards through the air, 108 of those on Orsborne’s two touchdown receptions.
"The first couple of passes were off. Then we started to relax and got things going," Orsborne said.
The Tigers’ offense picked up momentum early with three first downs. Quarterback Phillip Edwards capped the drive with a 5-yard touchdown.
Lakeview’s defense recovered from the touchdown and had two interceptions in the first quarter, but couldn’t stop a big Commerce drive half way through the second quarter that ended with Orsborne’s first touchdown of the night from 1 yard out.
Orsborne finished the game with 65 yards on nine carries, but was outgained by Jon Cash, who led all Tiger rushers with 77 yards on eight carries.
Orsborne reached the end zone again for a 20-point Tiger lead late in the second quarter when he caught a 35-yard pass from Cody Streetman, who was filling for an injured Edwards. Streetman finished the game and accounted for all of Commerce’s passing offense.
The Tigers scored four minutes later when Travaris Glasper gained 20 yards on two carries then scored a 5-yard touchdown to give Commerce a 27-0 lead at halftime. Glasper finished the game with 61 yards on five carries.
Both teams struggled to hold onto the football early in the third quarter. Lakeview recovered a fumble on Commerce’s first drive, but then lost the ball itself three plays later.
The Tigers regained possession and scored when Streetman connected with Orsborne for a 73-yard touchdown for a 34-0 lead, the tandem’s second touchdown of the night.
After scoring another rushing touchdown late in the third quarter, the Tigers took advantage of Lakeview turnovers again, intercepting Haughton Carswell’s pass and taking over possession at the Lions’ 35-yard line. Five plays later, Demetrius Bonds scampered 19 yards for the Tigers’ final score of the night.
Lakeview avoided the shutout with four minutes left in the game when White took a pitch from Carswell and avoided several Commerce players upfield for a 62-yard run, bringing the final score to 47-7. White finished the game with 79 yards on three carries.
Commerce will look to lock up a playoff spot when they play host to Social Circle at 7:30 p.m. next Friday. Lakeview continues its hunt for a region win at Athens Academy at 7:30 p.m. next Friday.