No. 3 Auburn schools Titans


By Mike Goodson/Sports Correspondent

Auburn High brought a hefty No. 3 Class 6A rating to Gadsden City last Friday. 

The Tigers left behind a bunch of believers after thrashing the Titans, 49-24, at GCHS. 

Seventh-ranked Gadsden City (4-1, 3-0) did have some success in scoring a season-high 24 points, but the Titans chased Auburn quarterback Cameron Echols-Luper most of the evening. 

Luper rushed the ball 20 times for a game-high 210 yards, including touchdown runs of 65 and 63 yards. He was also 8-of-11 in passing for 113 yards, two touchdowns and and an interception.

“Luper is a great athlete, Auburn has a great team,” said Gadsden City head football coach Joe Billingsley  “We played hard, but we have some things to correct. But we have great kids with a winning attitude, and next week we get back to region play.” 

The visitors wasted little time in finding paydirt, taking the opening kickoff 81 yards in eight plays for the game’s first score. 

Luper passed 28 yards to Blaise Taylor for the touchdown. Daniel Ledbetter added the PAT, and Auburn held a 7-0 lead with nine minutes to go in the first quarter. 

The Tigers added another score with 4:59 to go in the opening stanza. 

After Auburn recovered an onside kick, Luper passed seven yards to Gevon Jones for the score and a 14-0 lead.

The Tigers added another score to open the second quarter, driving 96 yards in only four plays. 

Luper scored on a 65-yard run to cap a series in which he had three rushes for 97 yards. The PAT gave Auburn a 21-0 lead with 10:56 to go in the first half. 

The Titans finally dented the scoreboard when Austin Piazza booted a 22-yard field goal to cut the Auburn lead to 21-3 with 6:42 remaining in the half. 

Gadsden City added another score three minutes later when D.D. Atkinson intercepted a Luper pass and returned it to the Tiger 6. It took the Titans six plays to find the end zone as C.J. Moore tossed a three-yard touchdown pass to LaGerrald Malone. 

Piazza booted the PAT, and the Titans were back in the game trailing 21-10 at halftime. 

That was as close as the Titans would get, however.

Auburn added another TD on its first possession of the second half, driving 56 yards in only three plays. The PAT increased the lead to 28-10 with 9:38 to go in the third.

A 55-yard punt return by Blaise Taylor gave Auburn a 35-10 lead with 8:07 to go in the third period. 

Gadsden City found the end zone on its next possession, driving 85 yards in eight plays. 

Chris Lawrence scored on a 49-yard run, and Piazza’s PAT cut the Tiger lead to 35-17 with 6:45 remaining in the quarter. 

Luper then scored his second TD on a 63-yard run to increase Auburn’s lead to  42-17. 

Gadsden City found the end zone once more time when C.J. Moore passed 35 yards to Daveunte Blount to make it 42-24 with 8:16 remaining following Piazza’s PAT.

Auburn added one final score on a one-yard run by Jadarius Drummond.

Gadsden City resumes region play this week as the Titans travel to Pell City.

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