Week after week the Lowndes Vikings (3-0) are pushing through opponents no matter the size, classification or reputation.
They defeated the No. 3 Parkview Panthers (1-1) 38-7 on Friday at Martin Stadium, never allowing the Panthers to threaten them.
The tone was set from kickoff as the Vikings forced five consecutive punts on Parkview’s opening drives.
That was good enough to give the Vikings a 14-0 advantage at the end of the first quarter and a 21-0 lead with 8:55 remaining in the opening half.
The Lowndes “Concrete Curtain” defense nullified Parkview’s feature back, Cody Brown, by swarming to him whenever he touched the ball. The trend held throughout the contest as the No. 2 running back in the state was held to 22 yards on 17 carries.
When the Panthers attempted to go to the back on screen passes, more of the same continued. The Vikings defense was relentless in their pursuit of Brown and it was by design.
“He’s an unbelievable high school football player,” defensive coordinator Byron Slack said of Brown. “To think he’s got another year of high school football is a little scary to be honest with you. With that being said, the kids understand that if there ain’t two or three people tackling that kid every time, he can break it at any time. It’s something that they decided on Sunday and I give them all the credit. They came in and put a good week’s work in and got after it.”
With the Viking’s defense maintaining Parkview, the offense was able to play with breathing room.
Sophomore quarterback Jacurri Brown opened and closed the scoring for the Vikings. A seven-yard score in the first quarter put the Vikings ahead 7-0.
A 30-yard run with 2:23 remaining in the game put the Vikings ahead by 30 points.
He finished the night with 111 yards and three touchdowns on 18 carries from the ground and 116 yards on 7-of-12 passing through the air.
“It’s really dangerous,” Brown said after the game. “I feel bad for the defensive coordinator that has to go against us next week. But it’s a great feeling, a real great feeling. I’ve got to give it to the o-line though.”
The sole Parkview touchdown came on the heels of a Jacurri Brown interception. It was the only Viking turnover in the game and proved to be the spark the Panthers needed.
After the score, the defense put the Panther’s offense on standby. The Concrete Curtain forced Parkview to punt 10 times in the contest. It helped alleviate pressure from Lowndes’ offense in what could’ve become a close contest.
“Defense showed out tonight,” senior receiver Ghetti Brown said. “It was a lot of drives that we didn’t necessarily get where we wanted but our defense had our back. Later on in the season we know we’ve got each other.”
It helps that the Viking’s stars on defense played up for the occasion. Thomas Davis was apart of the Viking front seven that combined for 26.5 tackles. Davis said Parkview has been marked on his calendar all year.
“Last year I didn’t get in that much—I got in one play and got a sack,” Davis said postgame. “It’s my time this year, I’ve got to shine. I’ve got to show out. I’ve got to do something … Our defense came at them today. They have a good running back, Cody. He did his thing tonight but we had to keep him under control.”
The Vikings took a game that had a playoff potential and neutralized it into another monopolizing victory. It started on Sunday and carried throughout the week according to head coach Randy McPherson.
“It really feels good,” McPherson said. “I’m very proud of the players and the coaches. They came in on Sunday afternoon with a business-like attitude and it stuck around all week long. They worked hard. We had physical practices. They corrected a lot of mistakes from last Friday night and we’re going to expect that each week. If we can do that each week and improve a little bit, who knows.”
The Vikings now turn their attention to East Coweta for their first road trip of the season. While the Indians don't have the same recognition and reputation as Parkview, the Lowndes will still treat them the same.
“Just because we’re playing a different team that probably isn’t as high ranking as Parkview it doesn't matter,” senior Gary Osby said. “We’re still going to come out there with the same mindset and pretty much the same mentality and do what it does.”
East Coweta is currently 0-2 after losing their first two games by a combined score of 71-9. In last year’s meeting, the Vikings won 37-12 at Martin Stadium.
The Vikings and Indians will play next Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Garland-Shoemake Stadium in Sharpsburg, GA.