The senior accounted for five touchdowns in the first half (two rushing, two passing and one on an interception return), as the unbeaten Wildcats rolled to a 46-7 homecoming win Friday night at Jack Stewart Field.
“He is our catalyst offensively,” Saks coach Jonathan Miller said. “A lot of what we do, we build around him.
“He’s got some weapons around him that are good players, too. He’s doing a good job so far. He’s got to keep getting better just like the rest of us, and just get the ball in the hands of his other skill players on offense and let them do their jobs.”
Smith did just that early, taking advantage of good field position to score the game’s first two touchdowns.
After shutting down Susan Moore’s offense on its initial drive, the Wildcats took over at the Bulldogs’ 39-yard line. Calvin Figueroa broke a 24-yard run on fourth down, setting Saks up at the 8. Smith did the rest, faking a handoff to running back Davontae Young and carrying up the middle for a 4-yard touchdown run.
The Wildcats started their next possession at Susan Moore’s 48 after another three-and-out from the Bulldogs. After a 9-yard run by Demetrius Powell and an 11-yard pickup by Young, Smith kept the ball around the right side and scored from 28 yards out, putting Saks up by 12 with 5:35 to go in the first quarter.
Smith finished the game with six carries for 112 yards and two scores, but he was equally impressive throwing the ball.
On the Wildcats’ next drive, Smith faked a handoff, looked deep and found Darion Coleman in the end zone for a 32-yard touchdown, putting Saks up 19 with 3:12 left in the first quarter after a successful extra point from Smith.
Smith got the ball in Coleman’s hands again late in the second quarter. Coleman made some good moves after the catch and out-ran the defense for a 67-yard touchdown reception, extending the lead to 40 with 4:04 to go in the first half after a successful extra point from Alex Calderon.
Smith finished the night 5-of-10 passing for 123 yards and two scores. Coleman racked up four catches for 114 yards and two touchdowns.
Saks’ Rashard Williams had a 5-yard touchdown run early in the second quarter, and Figueroa scored from 3 yards out a few plays later after Powell forced a fumble on the ensuing kickoff that was recovered by Daniel Heard at Susan Moore’s 7-yard line.
Miller credited his line for the offense’s first-half success.
“I think our offensive line has played really well up to this point,” Miller said. “That’s a key for any team, and it has been for us. As long as they keep doing a good job up front, then our backs – when they get the ball – can do something with it. It starts up front, and they’ve done a great job all year.”
With the Wildcats up by 40 late in the first half, Smith had one more big play left in him – this time on defense. He capped Saks’ scoring by intercepting a pass from Susan Moore quarterback Ryan Brown and bringing it back for a touchdown.
The Bulldogs scored their only touchdown on a 6-yard pass from Brown with 11 seconds remaining in the game.
Saks (3-0, 2-0 Class 3A, Region 5) travels to Ashville next Friday with the offense on quite a roll.
“You hope to get better throughout the course of the season,” Miller said. “I don’t think we’ve peaked yet. Hopefully that’s somewhere down the road. We have to keep getting better and get ready for Ashville next week.”