Alonzo Hill displayed some great instincts on defense Friday night as Harlem played host to Butler.
Harlem coach Jimmie Lewis said in a way that's a problem, because there is an issue when the free safety is the team's leading tackler.
"He did a good job. He came up and gave some real hard hits. He ran some people down that broke through," Lewis said. "He probably was the leading tackler, and that's not good."
That meant the visiting Bulldogs were getting plenty of push into the secondary, piling up rushing yards in a 36-0 victory over the home Bulldogs.
Despite the lopsided total, Lewis said the defense for Harlem (0-3) did a good job of limiting the opponent. The problem was that the defense was put in difficult positions.
"The defense did a pretty good job the first half, considering that the offense laid the ball on the ground inside our territory three times in a row," Lewis stressed. "I mean, you just can't ask the defense to do everything every time.
"The offense has to do their part, and the offense didn't do anything tonight for the third week in a row."
Butler got on the board early, scoring three touchdowns in less than three minutes, all off Harlem fumbles.
Devonte Tardy punctuated that stretch when he returned a fumble 20 yards for a touchdown to give Butler a 22-0 first-quarter lead.
"They came out and took it to us," Lewis said. "We dropped it on the ground three times in the first half, and they scored all three. We set them up in the first half. The second half, they just ran over us.
"They've got a good football team. You've got to hand it to them."
One problem could have been a lack of reps in practice in regard to the center-quarterback exchange. Hunter Hamilton, the center and an integral part of Harlem's triple-option offense, and quarterback Zach McIntire both were dealing with ankle injuries.
Lewis said both could have played if the game were a region contest, but he held them out to get healthy heading into the sub-region schedule. Starting in their place were center Dalton Deckert and quarterback Trey Price.
Jeffery Menefee continued to carry the load for Butler (3-0), which ran the ball 50 times and threw only twice, both incompletions. Menefee carried 21 times for 116 yards and two touchdowns.
Butler amassed 355 rushing yards. Butler has outscored its opponents 100-0 this season.
"It's really good to have a goose egg three straight games," second-year Butler coach Ashley Harden said. "It says a lot. Our defense is fast, and they work hard."
Harlem had trouble moving the ball against a physical, swarming defense, managing only 31 yards of offense in the first half.
With the lead and a running clock, Butler played ball control in the second half; the Bulldogs ran 29 plays and gained 11 first downs, while Harlem ran only 12 plays.
Warriors get first win of the season
Jamal Cummings scored a pair of touchdowns and ran for 114 yards to lead Grovetown to its first win of the season, a 40-6 victory over Cross Creek.
Both of the sophomore's touchdowns came in the first half, as the Warriors (1-2) built a 26-0 halftime lead.
Tae Miller also had two touchdowns, D.J. Tyson ran for one, and Juwan Biggers scored on a 77-yard interception return.
Red Devils handle 'Pack
Lincoln County held Greenbrier to 163 yards, defeating the Wolfpack 30-7.
Greenbrier (1-3) was without starting quarterback Scott Reeder, who suffered a broken collarbone the week before in a loss to Hephzibah. Jordan Hunt started in his place, completing nine of 21 passes for 67 yards and an interception.
Jahvon Hardrick scored the lone touchdown for the Wolfpack and led the way on the ground, carrying 18 times for 88 yards.
Panthers fall to top team
Lakeside held Northside-Warner Robins to its lowest point total of the season, but it wasn't enough, as the Panthers fell 30-7 to the Class AAAA No. 1 Eagles.
The Panthers (1-3) played host to last year's state runner-up in Class AAAAA. The Eagles (3-0) have a record of 146-15 since 1998.
Lions top Swampcats
Tyler Roberson threw a pair of first-quarter touchdowns to Matt Rogers, leading Augusta Christian to a 26-14 road win over Laurence Manning.
The first score was a 52-yard strike and the second was an 80-yard touchdown four minutes later, helping Rogers to a monster day. He had four catches for 168 yards.
Roberson finished 10-for-14 passing for 180 yards for the Lions (2-2). Christian Croft and Thomas Banks each added a touchdown run.
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