GADSDEN, Alabama -- The Gadsden Titans used a strong running game to go on and defeat Fort Payne 45-20 at Titan Stadium Thursday night. Gadsden City only led by nine points at the half but outscored Fort Payne 22-6 in the second half.
CJ Miller rushed for 112 yards on 11 carries and two touchdowns in the game and give credit to the offensive line. "We went hard and the O-line was pushing together working as a team," said Titans offensive lineman Rod Orr. "Our double teams were excellent. We were moving real good tonight. Backs did a good job of hitting our holes. Feels great to get these first two wins so far but we have to keep working hard."
Gadsden City (2-0) jumped out early in the game. WIth 10:34 left in the first quarter, Jaquon Woods scored on a 28-yard sweep around the right end for a Titans touchdown. With the score, Gadsden City led 7-0. With 2:52 left in the first quarter, Brady Troup had to control a bad snap over his head, pickup the ball and found Woods downfield and Woods turned the broken play into a touchdown. With the score, the Titans led 14-0 late in the first quarter.
With 11:40 left in the second quarter, Fort Payne scored on a Ashton Brown 34-yard touchdown run for the Wildcats. With the score, Fort Payne cut into the Gadsden City lead at 14-7. The Fort Payne defense forced a punt after their score and on a long Cameron Thomas reception, that play setup the next Wildcats touchdown. With 8:41 left in the second quarter, Darwin Camp scored on a 1-yard touchdown run for the Wildcats.
The Titans took the lead for good when Miller scored on a 57-yard touchdown run. With the score, Gadsden City took a 21-14 lead and didn't look back. "We didn't quit and I like that even with a little adversity, we stayed the course in the game," said Titans Head coach Ali Smith. "We had some mental errors but we kept fighting the entire game."
With 1:25 left in the half, Fort Payne started a drive at their 4-yard line and the first play lost two yards and the second play resulted in a safety for the Titans defense. With the safety, Gadsden City took a 23-14 lead into halftime.
The second half was pretty much all Gadsden City. With 9:14 left in the third quarter, the Titans scored on a DeMarcus Macon 11-yard touchdown run around the right end. Macon pulled the ball from the running back and raced around the end for the touchdown. With the score, the Titans led 30-14. With the touchdown, Macon added 128 yards on six receptions.
With 11:53 left in the fourth quarter, Artavious Hicks scored on a 1-yard touchdown run. Khamari Smith added the two-point conversion and Gadsden City led 38-14. With 5:39 left in the game, Miller scored on a 27-yard touchdown run and the Titans led 45-14.
Fort Payne scored last in the game when Payton DuBois scored on a 6-yard touchdown run to close out the scoring. "I like the effort of the defense," added Smith. "We had some mental mistakes that we have to fix and clean up for our next game.
Up next, Gadsden City will host Oak Mountain while Fort Payne will travel to Arab both region games for both teams.