Griffins Take Down Charging Knights

 

Fairfield Central quarterback Stanley McManus (10) plows his way through the Crestwood line. (Photo/Joe Seibles)

WINNSBORO – The Fairfield Central Griffins beat back a third-quarter Crestwood charge Friday night, outdueling the Knights 38-21 at E.K. McLendon Stadium.

The Griffins had amassed a 28-6 lead going into the half, but the Knights, propelled by top-rated running back Ty’Son Williams, used a short field after a partially blocked Stanley McManus punt to grind 57 yards and chop the lead in half. Williams capped the drive with a 5-yard run, then added the 2-point conversion run for good measure with 6:14 left on the clock.

The momentum then drained completely from the Griffin sidelines late in the period as Williams and the Knights drew to within a touchdown on their next possession. Starting at their 15, the Knights appeared to be stalled at their 30, but on third-and-12, Williams split out into the slot, snatching a Tylas Greene pass and racing 70 yards untouched for the score. Colby Becker’s kick cut the Griffin lead to 28-21 with 1:49 to go in the third.

“We made a mistake on the back end,” Griffins head coach Demetrius Davis said. “We rolled to a cover 2 look when we should have been in cover 3. We made a bone-head mistake there to let the best running back in the state go running down the field scot-free.”

But on the ensuing kickoff, the Griffins’ battery got the jump-start it needed to retake command of the game as Shadarius Hopkins fielded the boot at his own 3, found the seam and raced down the sidelines. Becker had a shot at Hopkins near the 50, but as the Crestwood kicker’s shadow fell across Hopkins’ facemask, the Griffin return man found another gear and showed Becker his tail lights.

“The momentum was gone,” Davis said. “If Shadarius Hopkins doesn’t take that ball to the house, I don’t know if we win this football game. (Williams) was starting to get revved up, and that’s the one thing I was hoping wouldn’t happen was for him to get revved up. That play opened it up.”

The 97-yard return for 6 was punctuated by Isias Leon’s extra point, giving the Griffins a 35-21 edge.

Leon added the final points late in the fourth with a 32-yard field goal with 2:21 left in the game.

Williams gashed the Griffins for 195 rushing yards, 76 of which came on a TD run from scrimmage with 5:29 left in the opening frame. The Crestwood PAT was a wash, but the score cut the Griffins’ lead to 7-6 at the time. The Griffins had raced out front early on a 24-yard TD pass from McManus to Hopkins with 9:44 still on the first-quarter clock. McManus gave the Griffins a 13-6 lead with 3:04 to go in the first, hammering the ball across the goal line from 1-yard out on third down.

While the Crestwood defense kept Griffin running back Joe Young largely in check all night, McManus had a break-out performance on the ground, rushing for 144 yards on 17 carries and a pair of TDs. Young, meanwhile, was held to just 74 yards on 22 tries.

“They weren’t going to let Joe Young beat them,” Davis said. “They did a good job of packing the box for Joe, so now we say if you’re going to do this, you’ve got to pick your poison. If we get a couple more receivers out here we’ve got a chance to do something special.”

Bryan Young, used primarily as a blocking back in the Griffins’ read-option scheme, slipped into open space in the end zone early in the second quarter. McManus rifled the ball right between Young’s numbers for the TD, and Joe Young snagged the 2-point conversion pass from McManus with 8:30 on the clock, giving Fairfield a 21-6 lead.

McManus added another 1-yard TD run just before the half for the 28-6 advantage.

The Griffins, now 2-1 on the season, travel to Bishopville next week to take on 0-2 Lee Central. The Stallions were idle this week, having opened the season on Aug. 22 with a 42-14 loss to Christ Church Episcopal. Last week, the Stallions were hammered by Marion, 42-6 on the road.

 

CHS: 6-0-15-0 – 21

FCHS: 13-15-7-3 – 38

 

Scoring

First Quarter

FC: Shadarius Hopkins 24 pass from Stanley McManus. Isias Leon kick. (9:44)

C: Ty’Son Williams 76 run. Run failed. (5:29)

FC: S. McManus 1 run. Kick failed. (3:04)

Second Quarter

FC: Bryan Young 8 pass from S. McManus. Joe Young 3 pass from S. McManus. (8:30)

FC: S. McManus 1 run. I. Leon kick. (0:54)

Third Quarter

C: T. Williams 5 run. T. Williams 3 run. (6:14)

C: T. Williams 70 pass from Tylas Greene. Colby Becker kick. (1:49)

FC: S. Hopkins 93 kick return. I. Leon kick. (1:36)

Fourth Quarter

FC: I. Leon 32 FG. (2:21)

 

Team Stats

                                                                                C                                                             FC

First Downs                                                        10                                                           13

Rushes-Yards                                                     38-218                                                   39-218

Passing Yards                                                     96                                                           74

C-A-Int                                                                 3-11-1                                                   6-14-0

Fumbles-Lost                                                     3-1                                                          1-0

Penalties-Yards                                                 10-55                                                     6-61

 

Individual Stats

RUSHING: C—Justin McDaniel 3-7, Ty’Son Williams 26-195, Traye Davis 5-6, Tylas Greene 4-10. FC—Stanley McManus 17-144, Joe Young 23-74.

RECEIVING: C—Justin McDaniel 2-26, Ty’Son Williams 1-70. FC—Shadarius Hopkins 2-32, Bryan Young 1-8, Chandon Davis 1-33, Joe Young 2-1.

PASSING: C—Tylas Greene 3-11, 96 yards, INT, TD. FC—Stanley McManus 5-12, 41 yards, 2TD; Josh Bell 1-1, 33 yards; Markell Whitaker 0-1.