By Nick Nunn, Staff Writer

From the very beginning, the Bulldogs’ 31-16 win over Greene County was a little rough around the edges.

Including Greene County’s first attempt at a kickoff at the start of the game, the first five plays of the game resulted in a penalty. Three of those were against Morgan County, which resulted in a first-and-thirty-nine for the Dogs right off the bat.

Fortunately, the Bulldogs were able to come together and pull themselves out of that deep yardage for a first down, but Morgan County Head Coach Bill Malone wasn’t happy with the effect of that type of start on the team and the fans.

“What a horrible way to start a game,” began Malone. “That kills momentum, and kills interest in the stands, and that’s the last thing you want to have happen.”

After the start, however, things began to run a bit more smoothly. Coach Malone praised several players, including Melvin Davis, who was playing fullback with only three days’ worth of preparation.

“Melvin did a fantastic job,” said Malone.

Coach Malone also lauded Trey Chapman, saying, “Trey looked faster than we all thought he was. He’s got the ability to be a really good player.”

Malone also addressed the safety, which gave Greene County an additional two points in the fourth quarter. He stated that, because the situation that led to the safety arises so infrequently, the coaching staff had not given Tristan Yontz, who ultimately pushed the ball out of the back of the end zone, adequate instruction about how to deal with a loose ball so close to the team’s own end zone; that he should have just fallen on the ball to “cut their losses.”

With Putnam just a couple of days away, Malone then addressed the War Eagles’ team so far this season.

“They are freshmen, but you can’t tell it on the film,” said Coach Malone about Putnam County, whose team is comprised predominantly of underclassmen; underclassmen that have been winning the Piedmont Athletic Conference championships for the past couple of years, noted Malone.

Despite their ages, Malone expects the War Eagles to be the “biggest challenge of this new season” and that he is “very surprised” by how well their team is playing.

Coach Malone’s one-week-at-a-time mentality notwithstanding, with the slightest provocation, he can rattle off the results of almost all of the 8-AAA games from the past Friday, and said that everything is “about where you thought is would be” at this point.

He did note, however, North Oconee’s 23-28 loss to St. Pious, who beat North Oconee by a much larger margin last year (50-14) and only narrowly lost the AAA State Championship to Buford last season.

Malone described North Oconee’s ability to hold St. Pious and almost come out with a win as an “eye-opener.”

But first the Dogs have to deal with Putnam, who will be here at Bill Corry Stadium this Friday for kickoff at 7:30.

MCHS Football Morgan County High School Dogs vs. Putnam War Eagles, Bill Corry Stadium, Madison, Friday, 7:30 p.m.