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Football: Central earns first consecutive wins since 2008
Bulldogs improve to 2-0 in subregion with victory over Cambridge
Forsyth Central quarterback Michael Branigan takes off on a run against Cambridge on Friday in Cumming. - photo by Autumn Vetter

For the first time since 2008, Forsyth Central is on a winning streak.

The Bulldogs dominated both sides of the line of scrimmage as they steamrolled Cambridge 42-13 on Friday night during homecoming at Central. After starting the season 0-4, the Bulldogs (2-4, 2-0 Region 7A-AAAAA) have won their first two subregion games.

Central tallied 395 yards of offense, including 367 yards on the ground.

Bulldogs quarterback Michael Branigan rushed for 141 yards and two touchdowns on only 12 carries and was perfect through the air, going 2-for-2 for 28 yards. Both passes were completed to wide receiver Jeremiah Jones.

"It was a good night in all three phases [of the game]," Central coach Chris Bennett said. "Michael Branigan had a good night tonight. ... Anytime you have that many yards, the offensive line needs to get credit."

The game also marked the first time that Bennett and younger brother Craig Bennett, the head coach of first-year Cambridge (0-6, 0-2), had ever squared off as head coaches.

"It’s probably tougher on our families than on me and him," Chris Bennett said. "This is what we do. Somebody has got to lose, [but] anytime you go against your family it’s tough."

Central’s offense got the ground attack rolling on its second possession, as Branigan faked a pitch and sprinted 69-yards for the opening touchdown.

The extra point was good by place kicker Anel Ramic, giving Central a 7-0 lead with 55 seconds left in the first quarter. Ramic was perfect on the evening, connecting on all six extra points.

Central piled on the points in the second quarter with three touchdowns.

Running back C.J. Cochran scored the second touchdown on a 42-yard scamper just 43 seconds into the period. Central then went on a 13-play 73-yard drive capped off by a quarterback sneak by Branigan to take a 21-0 lead.

The Bulldogs added one more score on a power run by Cochran from 14 yards out to extend the lead to 28-0 at halftime. Cochran carried the ball six times for 82 yards and two touchdowns in the game.

The Bulldogs took the opening second half kickoff out to their own 45-yard line. It took only four plays to find the end zone for a fifth time, as running back Shay Hollis scored from four yards out with 10:11 remaining in the third quarter.

Central’s defense stepped up and intercepted a pass to stop the Bears next drive.

Linebacker Chase Peterson stepped in the passing lane and picked the pass at the 42-yard line. A great run down to the Cambridge 7-yard line gave Central a short field.

With 6:48 to go in the third, fullback Jake Gorczyca found the end zone to put the game away at 42-0. Gorczyca had eight rushes for 62 yards.

The only negative was the number of penalties for the Bulldogs. Central was penalized 11 times for 80 yards.

Besides the interception by Peterson, the defense played well. Kris Smith and Jay Fishman each had a sack, and Ruben Rubio recovered a first half fumble.

"Our kids feel like they’re pretty good right now," Bennett said. "Any time you can win two games in a row it’s a good thing."

Next for Central is a trip to Sequoyah on Friday.