ATLANTA - Lincoln County's cheerleaders created a sign for the football team to run through before Friday afternoon's Class A semifinal against Johnson County at the Georgia Dome.
The banner read "Georgia Dome. It's like our second home."
Without breaking stride, the Red Devils ran through the sign before their seventh semifinal game in the Georgia Dome since 1997.
They ran through Johnson County in much the same fashion shortly afterward. Lincoln County advanced to the Class A state championship with a 48-21 win, due largely to a dominating performance running the football.
The Red Devils (11-3) won their 11th game in a row by rushing for 370 yards on 51 carries. Shawntavious Jennings led the way with 161 yards and two touchdowns on 10 carries.
"It didn't take us long to figure out we had them running the football," Jennings said. "We saw on the film all week that these boys couldn't stop a team that ran the ball right at them. We knew we could take it right to these Johnson County boys."
The Red Devils built a 29-14 halftime lead by scoring on five of their first six possessions against a Johnson County team that had won 12 consecutive games. The halftime rushing totals displayed the beginning of a dominance that would last the entire game.
Lincoln County had 184 rushing yards on 19 carries at the half, including eight runs of 10-plus yards in the first half.
"We were just hitting them in the mouth coming off the football and hitting them so hard they didn't want to hit us back," Lincoln County senior offensive guard DeRon Lee said.
"I knew we could run on those guys all day on the opening drive."
Reach Jeff Sentell at (706) 823-3425 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
STAR OF THE GAME: Lincoln County's Shawntavious Jennings ran the ball 10 times for 161 yards and two touchdowns.
PLAY OF THE GAME: It's easily the "42 Trap" ran by the Red Devils holding a 29-21 lead just before the fourth quarter. Jennings got the carry and converted the third-and-30 situation with ease, scampering 86 yards for his second touchdown.