Brookwood's Jamaal Cole (32) splits a pair of Walton defenders, including Robert McCarthy (23) and Ridge Gibson (43) during the first half of Saturday's game in the Corky Kell Classic at the Georgia Dome.
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ATLANTA — In the end, Brookwood simply had no solution for Tyren Jones in the finale to the 2012 Corky Kell Classic.
Walton’s Alabama-bound tailback ran for 308 yards and five touchdowns, with 188 yards and three of those scores coming as the No. 3 state-ranked Raiders broke open a close game in the second half and cruised home with a 35-24 win Saturday at the Georgia Dome.
Counting the two passes he caught for 12 yards, Jones accounted for 88.9 percent of the Raiders’ 360 total yards on the evening and finished just 31 yards short of Walton’s school record of 339 yards set by Michael Boydston.
Most of all, he made life miserable for the Broncos’ defense.
“We’re young and inexperienced on defense,” Brookwood coach Mark Crews said. “Playing against a back like that, that’s not a very good combination.”
Brookwood (0-1) also had its moments offensively, especially Jamaal Cole, who ran for 167 yards and two TDs on 25 carries, and Kyrin Priester, who caught six passes for 90 yards and a score.
But the ninth-ranked Broncos also committed three turnovers and had penalties at the most inopportune times that Walton (1-0) exploited.
“We made too many mistakes on offense to score with them,” Crews said. “We hung in there with them a little while, and then we had two or three series where we ended up third-and-30 with penalties or whatever. That sort of let the game slip away from us.”
The game started slipping away from the Broncos when Walton took the second-half kickoff leading just 14-10 and needed just four plays before Jones broke off a 48-yard touchdown run to push the Raiders’ lead to 21-10 just 1:33 into the third quarter.
Two penalties early in Brookwood’s ensuing possession then squelched any chance for the Broncos to mount any sort of counter.
And after Walton took over at the Broncos’ 34 following a punt, Jones needed just four carries to go the distance, scoring from 6 yards out to extend the lead to 28-10 with 7:38 left in the third quarter.
Brookwood kept fighting, with Cole’s 3-yard TD just 22 seconds into the fourth quarter pulling the Broncos to within 28-17.
But Jones came right back on Walton’s next possession and carried all six plays, including another long scoring burst — this time from 52 yards — to cap his big night and make the Raiders’ lead 35-17 with 8:43 to play.
“I’m going to tell you, anybody who’s got a major college tailback, especially one of his caliber, and they don’t give him the ball a bunch, they’re idiots,” Walton coach Rocky Hidalgo said of Jones. “He’s going to get the football because he’s special because it is what it is.”
Defensive end Blake Montz also had a huge night for Walton, applying constant pressure to Brookwood quarterback Zach Moon, including sacking him four times on his own and combining with Ridge Gibson for another.
Despite the loss, Crews isn’t going to let his team get too discouraged given the level of competition Walton provided Saturday.
“I don’t think we’re ready to cancel our season or anything,” Crews said with a laugh. “When you come down here and play against the best competition in the state, it’s a measuring stick. … We’ve got a long season ahead of us, and … we’re going to get better.”
Things started out well enough for the Broncos, who overcame a surprise onside kick by Walton on the opening kickoff and took a 3-0 lead on Brandon Morrow’s 26-yard field goal with 4:49 left in the first quarter.
But Jones quickly helped Walton answer.
The 5-foot-8, 180-pound senior bolted for a 71-yard touchdown on Walton’s next possession, vaulting the Raiders into a 7-3 lead with 3:52 left in the opening frame.
Jones later added a 1-yard score to push the Raiders’ lead to 14-3 with 8:17 left in the first half.
But Brookwood was able to keep pace on its next series, with Cole running for 37 yards, and Zach Moon hitting Kyrin Priester on a key 19-yard pass to convert on third-and-7.
That set up Cole’s 19-yard touchdown run with 4:05 left in the half, which sent the Broncos into intermission down just 14-10.