WARRENTON, Ga. — The GMC Prep Bulldogs’ (2-2 region, 5-4 overall) four-game win streak ended in a big way Friday.
The Warren County Screaming Devils (2-1 region, 5-2 overall) strongly made their case as the second-best team in Region 7-A Public by bashing the Bulldogs 44-0.
Warren, coached by former GMC Prep head coach and athletic director Steven Simpson, was up just 14-0 at the half but added 30 points in the final two quarters to leave no doubt in the 2020 Homecoming victory.
“They (Warren) stopped sleepwalking and just manhandled us up front in the second half,” current GMC Prep head coach Lee Coleman said. “They were a little more physical than we were.”
Some mistakes also marred the Bulldogs’ chances of making a mark on the scoreboard.
“We’d drive and then get a holding penalty,” said Coleman. “Also, their two interior guys — No. 44 and No. 21 — they were different. They physically controlled the line of scrimmage and that hurt us.”
Standing on the opposite sideline now, Simpson was the head football coach at GMC Prep for six years before taking the defensive coordinator job at Warren last season. He was elevated to head coach after the previous head left.
“This game’s always tough for me just because the ties I have to that school and my kids still being there,” Simpson said. “I’m extremely proud of the way that program is developing with the potential to make the playoffs this year. I’m excited for Coach Coleman, that team and those guys. I wish them nothing but the best moving forward.”
The loss to Warren County means that the ‘Dogs need to win their final regular game at home against ACE Charter out of Macon. A win there would likely get GMC the third seed in the region and secure the program’s first trip to the postseason since 2002. A loss to ACE would most likely put that playoff berth in jeopardy as there could be a three-way tie for third, fourth and fifth depending on how the other region games play out.
The Bulldogs are off next week but will be back Nov. 20 to host ACE Charter in their regular-season finale. That game was originally scheduled for Nov. 13, but was pushed back a week.
“This puts a whole lot of weight on the ACE game,” Coleman said. “The good thing is we’ve got a chance to rest up and get a little healthier. We got banged up a little bit, nothing major, but now we’ve got to go beat ACE.”
With wins against Warren County and GMC already, Hancock Central has pretty much locked up the region championship. The Screaming Devils staked a strong claim for region runner-up by defeating the ‘Dogs Friday. Their two remaining games are against ACE next week and Wilkinson County to close out the regular season.