SAINT MATTHEWS - Calhoun County's defense got the Saints started off right in their playoff opener Friday night.
The Saints' defense intercepted five passes and did not allow an offensive score as Calhoun County beat C.A. Johnson 31-6 in the opening round of the Class A playoffs.
"Defense wins championships, and our defense played pretty well tonight," Calhoun County coach Walt Wilson said.
David Watson picked off three passes and also caught a touchdown for the Saints, who improved to 10-1 and will play host to Bamberg-Ehrhardt next week.
The Saints also had offense to spare thanks to Shamier Jeffery, who threw three touchdown passes and caught another.
Calhoun County marched 66 yards on its nine-play opening drive, capped by Brandon Thomas' 1-yard scoring run.
After the first of Watson's three interceptions, the Saints made it 13-0 after Jeffery's 11-yard touchdown pass to DeRonte Brown.
Following a series of turnovers, the Saints scored on a quick two-play drive that was highlighted by a 38-yard pass from Jeffery to Thomas. On the next play, Jeffery was on the receiving end of an 11-yard pass from Thomas to push the Saints ahead 19-0.
The Green Hornets hoped to capitalize on a drive just before the half, but the Saints turned them away on Watson's interception in the end zone.
Jeffery, a junior, threw two more touchdown passes in the third quarter, but the Saints struggled to find consistency on offense after halftime.
"I am not pleased with the effort, and we have got to play much better if we are going to go as far as we want in the playoffs," Wilson said.
The Green Hornets (7-4) scored their only points of the night on a 38-yard blocked punt return by Tyrick Adamson.
CA Johnson 0 6 0 0 -6
Calhoun County 13 6 12 0 -31
CC-Thomas 1 run (Brown kick)
CC-Brown 32 pass from Jeffery (Kick failed)
CC-Jeffery 11 pass from Thomas (conversion failed)
CAJ-Adamson 38 punt block return (kick failed)
CC-Brown 17 pass from Jeffery (conversion failed)
CC-Watson 15 pass from Jeffery (conversion failed)
1st downs 8 16
Rushes-yards 12-75 26-112
Passing 79 267
Comp-Att-Int 7-23-5 14-28-0
Punts-Avg. 3-27 2-26
Fumbles-lost 2-1 3-1
Penalties-yds 3-25 9-70
Rushing- CAJ: Adamson 6-30, Goodman 6-45. CC: Jeffery 7-48, Thomas 7-16, Stewart 7-10, Mitchell 3-38.
Passing- CAJ: Goodman 7-23-5-79. CC: Jeffery 13-15-0-220, Thomas 2-3-0-47.
Receiving- CAJ: Jones 1-7, Harris 2-22, Moyd 1-7, Adamson 3-30. CC: Watson 1-15, Mitchell 1-8, Brown 3-55, Irick 3-81, Jeffery 1-11, Thomas 3-66.