LAWRENCEVILLE – Trenton Jones and the Dacula rushing attack had their way Friday night.
Jones rushed for 243 yards and three touchdowns, part of a 469-yard day on the ground for the visitors, who remained unbeaten with a 49-28 victory over host Central Gwinnett.
"Trenton Jones had a great night, did a great job of holding onto the football, ran really hard (but) we had some guys that kind of spread it around," Dacula head coach Clint Jenkins said. "Unbelievable job by our offensive coordinator, Ken Burnette, and our offensive staff to kind of understand how the game was going. Did an unbelievable job of running the football and eating the clock. It was a lot of fun to watch our offense."
Central, which is 0-4 for the first time since 2009, had pulled even at 28-28 with just over seven minutes to play in the third quarter on a 17-yard touchdown catch by Tyan Milton, who finished with 136 receiving yards and three of the Black Knights’ four TDs, but it was all Dacula for the remainder of the game.
Jones capped a 10-play drive with a one-yard scoring plunge to make it 35-28 late in the third quarter. Kaleb Edwards took a hand off on Dacula’s first play from scrimmage on its next drive and scampered 68 yards for another score and a 42-28 cushion. Edwards carried the ball just four times, but collected 126 rushing yards and also scored from 46 yards early in the third that gave the Falcons a 28-21 edge.
Dacula, which is 4-0 for the first time since the 2014 team won its first eight games, averaged nearly nine yards per carry and threw the ball just seven times.
Dacula tied things up just before halftime, thanks in large part to a big third-down conversion. Facing third-and-21 at its own 41, quarterback Jarrett Jenkins hooked up with Kyle Efford for a 28-yard completion. Four plays later, Jones picked up his second rushing TD of the opening half, this time from 11 yards and the teams went into the locker room tied at 21-21.
The teams had traded scores before that.
Led by quarterback Skylar Adams, Central had grabbed the lead briefly. Adams was 5-for-8 on a nine-play drive, including connecting with Milton on a 21-yard touchdown, then with Daejon Reynolds for the two-point conversion and the Black Knights led 21-14 with just under eight minutes left in the half.
Dacula took advantage of a pass interference penalty on third-and-long and got a 12-yard TD scamper from Jenkins to go up 14-13 a minute into the second quarter.
Three touchdowns were scored within the first five minutes of the game.
Central stunned the visiting Falcons on the first play from scrimmage of the night. Adams found Reynolds in one-on-one coverage near the far sideline and Reynolds did the rest, scoring from 80 yards for a quick 7-0 lead.
Dacula followed with a 10-play drive that culminated with Jones’ 13-yard scoring run at the 7:48 mark.
Central answered immediately with another long passing play. Adams was forced to scramble and while throwing on the run hit Milton across the middle and Milton broke a pair of tackles for a 77-yard TD and the hosts led 13-7.
Adams threw for 376 yards.
DACULA 49, CENTRAL GWINNETT 28
DACULA 7 14 14 14 - 49
CENTRAL GWINNETT 13 8 7 0 - 28
CENTRAL GWINNETT: Daejon Reynolds 80 pass from Skylar Adams (Gabe Ivastain kick) 11:48
DACULA: Trenton Jones 13 run (Zach Gerks kick) 7:48
CENTRAL GWINNETT: Tyan Milton 77 pass from Adams (kick failed) 6:51
DACULA: Jarrett Jenkins 12 run (Gerks kick) 11:00
CENTRAL GWINNETT: Milton 21 pass from Adams (Reynolds pass from Adams) 7:51
DACULA: Jones 11 run (Gerks kick) :41
DACULA: Kaleb Edwards 46 run (Gerks kick) 9:44
CENTRAL GWINNETT: Milton 17 pass from Adams (Ivastain kick) 7:08
DACULA: Jones 1 run (Gerks kick) 1:47
DACULA: Edwards 68 run (Gerks kick) 11:39
DACULA: Daniel Poole 8 run (Gerks kick) 4:39