McEachern 37, Buford 14

Credit: Chip Saye

Credit: Chip Saye

Buford’s winning streak has come to an end.

McEachern (2-0), ranked No. 2 in Class AAAAAA, got three touchdown passes from Bailey Hockman and two scoring runs from Sam Jackson in a 37-14 victory at home Friday that stopped the state’s fourth-longest all-time winning streak at 42 games.

Officially, Buford’s last losses were back-to-back victories against Banks County and West Hall that were overturned by forfeit in 2012. The Wolves’ last loss on the field came on Sept. 7, 2012, a 19-15 setback against a Gainesville team that won the Class AAAAA championship that season. Buford, 2-1 and ranked No. 1 in Class AAAA, has won 10 state titles in the past 14 years and 11 overall.

“Buford is an outstanding program, and I’m just really thankful for them playing,” McEachern coach Kyle Hockman said. “It really says a lot about their program that they’ll play up and not worry about results. They just want to get better. It shows that they’re classy and how they think, and we want to be like them and win state championships.”

Buford trailed 17-7 at halftime but pulled within three points on Martin Mangram’s 4-yard touchdown run on its first possession of the third quarter. McEachern re-established control on its next possession, overcoming four penalties to drive 71 yards for a 24-14 lead on Jackson’s second touchdown run, a 21-yarder.

Jackson, who rushed for 161 yards and scored three touchdowns in the Indians’ 50-14 victory over Tucker two weeks ago, did not have a carry until midway through the second quarter, but he finished with 96 yards on 14 carries, and his 27-yard run midway through the second quarter gave the Indians a 17-7 lead.

Hockman added touchdown passes of 30 yards to C.J. Windham and 64 yards to Tyler Simmons in the fourth quarter to put the game away. Hockman was 9-for-22 passing for 237 yards. McEachern had a 406-383 advantage in total yardage.

Buford scored on the first play from scrimmage on a 66-yard double pass from Brandon Marsh to Alan Bussoletti. It was the Wolves’ only lead of the game, and it didn’t last long.

McEachern answered on its first offensive play when Hockman threw to a wide-open Tyler Smith for a 70-yard touchdown. Smith, a junior who is a four-star recruit in 247 Sports’ composite rankings, left the game in the second quarter with an apparent knee injury.

Cesar Dominguez kicked a 28-yard field goal later in the first quarter, giving McEachern the lead for good at 10-7.

“I’m really just proud of our players,” Kyle Hockman said. “They played really hard, executed and stayed together. They had some adversity, and we had to play the full game, which is a good thing early in the season when we’re trying to get ourselves where we want to go. There were definitely some weaknesses exposed, and that’s why we play these kinds of games so we can fix those things and go forward.”

Buford – 7-0-7-0 – 14

McEachern – 10-7-7-13 – 37

B – Alan Bussoletti 66 pass from Brandon Marsh (Jarett Burgos kick)

M – Tyler Smith 70 pass from Bailey Hockman (Cesar Dominguez kick)

M – Dominguez 28 field goal

M – Sam Jackson 27 run (Dominguez kick)

B – Martin Mangram 4 run (Burgos kick)

M – Jackson 21 run (Dominguez kick)

M – C.J. Windham 30 pass from Hockman (Dominguez kick)

M – Tyler Simmons 64 pass from Hockman (run failed)

Week 3 Game Recaps and Scores