NEW AUGUSTA, MS (WDAM) - On at least a half dozen occasions Friday night, the call "George Bolton up the middle" came over the public address system at Perry Central High School's football field.
The call certainly underscored the evening, as Bolton and his fellow ballcarriers spent most of the boltin' up the middle to power the Bulldogs past Richton High School 48-6.
McKail Sumrall rushed for 133 yards and three touchdowns on 12 carries, while Bolton added 123 yards and a score on just nine carries and Chris Sumrall ran for 98 yards and a touchdown.
All told, the Bulldogs (2-1) netted 348 yards and seven touchdowns on carries to roll past the Rebels (0-3) in the Perry County rivalry game.
"We really challenged our offensive front to do a good job this past week running the ball, and we really worked on our blocking," first-year Perry Central coach Chip Bilderback said. "The kids showed a lot better energy and the things that we challenged them to improve on, they did that."
Richton got 136 yards from running back Daylen Jones, with 61 yards coming late in the second quarter off a bizarre, backward, overhand lateral.
The ball hit the ground and bounced twice before being kicked forward. Jones picked up the ball and hesitated along with everybody else on the field before first jogging, then sprinting down the sideline to inside the Bulldogs' 10-yard line
After a penalty, fullback Rondarius Smith scored on a 4-yard run for the Rebels' lone score.
The score cut Perry Central's lead to 19-6 with about 90 seconds left in the half.
But the Bulldogs needed just three plays to go 67 yards, with McKail Sumrall's 23-yard run with 14 seconds left in the quarter sending Perry Central into halftime with a 27-6 lead.
"It's kind of been that way for the past three games," first-year Richton coach Chuck Maxie said. "We'll get something good, then we kind of shoot ourselves in the foot. It's all part of being young. They're great kids, but they just don't have a lot of game experience."
When the Bulldogs opened the second half with a 10-play, 67-yard drive that McKail Sumrall capped with a 10-yard run, Perry Central led 34-6 and the outcome was all but decided.
"Richton's a team that's continuing to get better," Bilderback said. "Coach Maxie's doing a great job, and they're going to be good by the end of the year. They're young, and so are we, and we just have to keep getting better every week."
Bolton, who gained at least 10 yards on seven of his nine carries, gave Perry Central a 7-0 lead after the first quarter on a 15-yard touchdown run.
Chris Sumrall scored on a 6-yard run on the first play of the second quarter to up the lead to 13-0, and after stopping the Rebels four times on first-and-goal at the 2-yard line, the Bulldogs marched 97 yards for a 19-0 lead. McKail Sumrall capped that drive with a 6-yard run.
Derrick Hartfield and Gabriel Hunter each scored on 4-yard runs for the Bulldogs to cap the scoring.
In addition to the goal-line stand, the Bulldogs came up with interceptions by Logan Hartfield and Nekyln Moody.
"Our defense played great," Bilderback said.
Perry Central travels to Resurrection Catholic on Sept. 10, while Richton hosts Bay High Friday.
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