Cordova scored early and often en route to a 68-33 win over 3A, Region 6 opponent Susan Moore. Following a quick three-and-out by Susan Moore, the 4th-ranked Blue Devils wasted no time getting on the board with a 49-yard touchdown run by Jake Howton.
Howton’s run would be the first of five touchdown runs of 49 yards or longer on the night for the Blue Devils.
Defensively, Howton followed his offensive explosion with an interception he returned for 42 yards, setting up his second touchdown run of the night. Howton scored from one yard away, capping a six-play drive and putting Cordova ahead 12-0.
Susan Moore did not go away without a fight, however.
Preston Kent capped off a nine-play drive with a four-yard run, cutting the Blue Devils lead to 12-6.
Staten did not let the Bulldogs celebrate very long, though.
On the next play from scrimmage, the electrifying running back ran over a defender and through two more tackles before finding the end zone 76 yards later, pushing Cordova back ahead by 13 points, 19-6.
Cordova picked off another Justin Hawkins pass, but Howton threw an interception of his own during the ensuing drive, and the Bulldogs cut into the lead once again with another Kent touchdown run.
Howton answered on the next drive when he slipped out of a sack and found Herman Woods wide open for a 55-yard touchdown pass.
It was all Cordova from there.
Cordova picked off its third pass of the first half and Howton found Maleki Harris for a touchdown just before halftime, pushing the Blue Devils ahead 33-13 at the break.
The Blue Devils increased their lead to 40-13 after halftime when Howton connected with his third touchdown pass of the night.
Susan Moore added a touchdown when Hawkins found his leading receiver Cody Sanders for a touchdown from 10 yards out. Sanders entered the game with 68 catches for 896 yards and nine scores.
Howton scampered in for his second rushing score of the night on the next drive. Howton finished his night on the ground with 113 yards on just 8 carries, and 7-of-10 passing for 100 yards and three scores.
Susan Moore ended its scoring on the night after converting two fourth downs on a 14-play drive capped off by a 24-yard touchdown run.
Staten took over from there.
The next two times Staten touched the football, he raced for a 68-yard score and followed it with a 60-yard scamper, putting the game out of reach for good at 61-33.
But Cordova was not finished. The Blue Devils forced a punt on the next drive, and handed Josh Pruett the ball on a dive play, and he carried it the distance from 60 yards away. Pruett finished the night with 98 yards on eight carries.
Next week, Cordova will travel to Calhoun County to take on the Piedmont Blue Devils in a rematch of last year’s state championship game.