Bengals Come Up Short Against Lexington

Blythewood’s Deyon Grayer reaches for the first down against Lexington Friday night.

BLYTHEWOOD – It had been a herculean struggle at Blythewood’s District 2 Stadium Friday night, and after 47 minutes and 56 seconds, the Bengals needed a miracle to send the battle with the Lexington Wildcats into overtime. But as Greg Huegel’s 55-yard field goal attempt fell short of the goal post with four seconds remaining in the game, so too did the Bengals’ hopes, and the Wildcats were able to escape with a 30-27 win.

“In those kinds of moments when we had chances to step up, as this year progresses we will step up in those moments and they will be just fine,” Bengals head coach Dan Morgan said. “We replaced 42 seniors and the kids are still learning.”

For the second straight week, the Bengals had the advantage early, finding the end zone on running back Lynard Jamison’s 4-yard toucdown run with 10:30 left in the first quarter. Huegel added the extra point to put Blythewood up 7-0.

Lexington drove the ball 78 yards on their first possession, but a strong goal line stand by the Bengals stopped the ‘Cats on fourth-and-goal. The Bengals, however, fumbled the ball right back to Lexington on their own 2-yard line moments later, leading to a 1-yard go touchdown run by Lexington quarterback Will Hunter. Christian Kinsley added the extra point to tie the game at 7.

After a pair of field goals for both teams, struggles would begin for much of the second quarter for both sides. But another gutsy fourth down conversion call by Lexington head coach Josh Stepp would fail again, giving the Bengals another chance at the Wildcats’ 37-yard line. The turnover set up a Jamison 2-yard touchdown run with 1:28 left in the second quarter, allowing the Bengals to take a 17-10 lead at the half.

The game would start to become more interesting in the second half, as the Wildcats wasted no time tying the game up at 17 with 8:45 left in the third quarter on a 44-yard touchdown pass from Hunter to wide receiver Brently Allen. Allen finished with six catches for 107 yards and a touchdown. It would be the second time this season a wide receiver would burn the Bengal defense with more than 100 yards receiving.

More troubles would plague Blythewood in the second half as Bengal quarterback Javon Smith was sidelined after suffering an injury mid-way through the third quarter. Smith would later return, but meanwhile back-up quarterback David Israel would carry the load for the offense, driving 37 yards to set up a Huegel 31-yard field goal, putting the Bengals up 20-17.

“(Israel) did a great job. We keep trying to coach up our kids like they are going to be the starter that night,” said Morgan. “He works his tail off and it’s great that we can put him on any moment to get the job done for us.”

On the very next drive, the Wildcats would answer right back behind a 58-yard rush from running back Grayson Chumley. That set Chumley up for a 2-yard touchdown plunge to finish the 80-yard drive with 9:48 left in the fourth quarter. Kinsley added the extra point to put Lexington back on top, 24-20.

Unlike last week against South Pointe, the Bengals were able to take on the battle of adversity. On the next Blythewood possession, Smith helped drive their offense to four first downs for an 80-yard drive of their own. Jamison was able to find the end zone once again on a 17-yard run to take a 27-24 lead for the Bengals. Jamison finished with seven catches for 75 yards and 47 rushing yards to go along with his three-touchdown performance.

“That drive was a lot of fun. (Jamison) really did a great job on that drive,” said Morgan. “We had some plays that we knew would work for us and they really helped us out on that drive.”

With the game tilting in the favor of the Bengals, the Wildcats passing game would come to life and wound the Blythewood defense. Hunter directed a dramatic fourth-quarter comeback, completing five passes, including a 29-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Keelo Norris with 19 seconds left. Kinsley shanked the point after, however, making it a 30-27 Wildcat lead. Hunter finished 21-of-33 for 236 yards and two touchdowns.

“That was tough,” Morgan said. “A great quarterback throwing to a great wide receiver against a great defensive back and he was in good position, but it just didn’t go our way.”

With only one timeout left and a small window of 19 seconds, the Bengals would look to their offense for another strong drive. After an Aaron Peak 49-yard kickoff return to the Lexington 45-yard line, the Bengals would only have time for a 6-yard run by Israel that left four seconds on the clock for Huegel. Off his foot, the kick looked true. Instead, it slid short right, leaving Huegel and the Bengals dejected.

“If it would have stopped at eight seconds we would have tried to get one more play in there, but with four seconds we thought let’s take our best shot,” Morgan said. “He’s kicked a 60-yard field goal before in practice. My thoughts were let’s put it in the hands of a really good kicker.”

The Bengals fall to 0-2 and will be looking to earn their first win this week as they travel to face off against Westwood High School.

“We are really hoping it’s going to come next week. As long as we keep improving, I’m not worried about it,” Morgan said. “As long as we keep improving I don’t want us to take a step backwards.”

Kick-off is at 7:30 p.m. at Westwood High School.

LHS 7-3-7-13  30

BHS 7-10-3-7  27

First Quarter

B—Lynard Jamison 4 run (Greg Huegel kick) 10:30

L—Will Hunter 1 run (Christian Kinsley kick) 2:52

Second Quarter

B—Huegel 31 field goal 10:48

L—Kinsley 38 field goal 5:16

B—Jamison 2 run (Huegel kick) 1:28

Third Quarter

L—Brentley Allen 44 pass from Hunter (Kinsley kick) 8:45

B—Huegel 25 field goal :15

Fourth Quarter

L –Grayson Chumley 2 run (Kinsley kick) 9:48

B—Jamison 19 run (Huegel kick) 1:39

L—Keelo Norris 28 pass from Hunter (kick failed) :19

LEX               BHS
FIRST DOWNS          20                         18
RUSHES-YARDS         33-175              40-185
PASSING YDS              236                      162
C-A-Int-TD                  33-21-2            25-16-0
Fumbles-Lost                   1-0                 3-2
Penalties-Yards            5-39                9-94

RUSHING: LEX-Carroll, S. 18-88; Chumley, G. 8-72; Hunter, W. 6-14; Carr, J. 1-1. BHS-Smith, Javon 13-78; Jamison, Lynard 11-47; Richardson, Joseph 4-41; Benson, Dabreon 4-13; Thomas, Osei 4-12; Israel, David 1-6; Knight, Marquise 2-2; TEAM 1-(-14).

PASSING: LEX-Hunter, W. 21-33-2-236. BHS-Smith, Javon 12-19-0-115; Israel, David 4-6-0-47.

RECEIVING: LEX-Allen, B. 6-107; Norris, K. 6-63; Hopper, J. 3-31; Brown, R. 2-22; Abrams, D. 2-6; Carroll, S. 1-4; Brittingham, J. 1-3. BHS-Jamison, Lynard 7-75; Grayer, Deyon 4-36; Rabon, Jacob 3-25; Churn, Trae 2-26.

Contact us: (803) 767-5711 | P.O. Box 675, Blythewood, SC 29016 | [email protected]