Ariton advances to third round

Published 10:37 pm Friday, November 15, 2019

Bryan Smith ran for three touchdowns in Ariton’s 30-12 win over LaFayette on Friday night in the second round of the state playoffs. The win sends the Purple Cats to the Class 2A quarterfinals for the second consecutive season.

The Purple Cats advanced to the quarterfinals last season only to fall to Highland Home. This season they go up against Leroy next Friday in a rematch of their playoff game in 2017.

On Friday night, the Purple Cats got the scoring started on a 5-yard touchdown run by Bryan Smith late in the opening quarter. Bryan Smith tacked on his second score one quarter later when he rumbled is way in for a three-yard touchdown. After a Successful two-point conversion by Smith, the Purple Cats went up 16-6. Smith picked up the trifecta with a five-yard touchdown run, putting Ariton up 23-6 with under a minute remaining in the first half.

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After a LaFayette touchdown in the third quarter, Zach Phillips got on the scoreboard with a four-yard run and after the extra point, the Purple Cats increased their lead to 18 at 30-12.

Smith finished the game with 75 yards on 14 carries. Blake Carroll finished as the team’s leading rusher with 98 yards on nine carries. Phillips added 27 yards on five carries.

Hayes Floyd had one completion for 70 yards, while Cade Webb had two catches for 55 yards and Carroll finished with one catch for 15 yards.

Quarterback Maddux Herring completed six of his 14 passes for 150 yards. Zach Ward finished with a team-high 18 tackles including two for a loss. Carroll had 13 tackles, while Tommy Oliver had nine.

The Purple Cats will travel to Leroy to take on the Bears next Friday night. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.