Jessel Curry scored two touchdowns, and Alexander Ross passed for 180 yards and a touchdown as Buford held on late to defeat Jefferson 30-22.
After forcing a punt on the first Jefferson drive, Buford’s David Petroni capped an 11-play drive with a 37-yard field goal to give the Wolves an early 3-0 advantage. On their next possession Ross connected with a wide-open Jessel Curry down the middle for 54 yards and a touchdown to widen the lead to 10-0 early in the second quarter.
Jefferson (11-1) responded on the ensuing possession as Caleb Meek took an option pitch from quarterback Darius Minor and streaked 25 yards for a touchdown. Buford blocked the extra point to preserve a 10-6 lead.
The Wolves appeared headed for an easy victory after a 5-yard touchdown run by Eric Barr capped an 80-yard, 12-play drive and 17-6 advantage with only 2:08 remaining in the half.
Jefferson, however, wasn’t finished as Minor led the Dragons on a furious drive just before the half. Two big runs by Minor during the drive gave the Dragons the ball on the Buford 31. After a fourth-down pass from Minor to Hoytes Damons kept the drive alive, Minor connected with Tyler Porter for a 9-yard touchdown pass with only nine seconds remaining in the half. Minor again passed to Porter for the 2-point conversion to carve the Buford lead to 17-14 at the half.
With momentum against them and the raucous Jefferson crowd in frenzy, Buford took the second half kickoff and embarked on a 17-play drive that consumed 9 minutes of the third quarter. Curry scored his second touchdown on a 1-yard run and 23-14 lead. Darrian Smith later added a 5-yard touchdown run and seemingly comfortable 30-14 Buford advantage with 7:17 remaining in the game.
Minor, who passed for 163 yards and 2 touchdowns, again rallied the Dragons connecting with JJ Damons for a 50-yard touchdown pass. Minor threw to Damons on the 2-point conversion to carve the Wolves lead to 30-22 with 4:51 remaining.