Bengals Hold Off Irmo Rally

Kyle Wright (10) bangs his way through the Irmo defense. (Photo/Kristy Kimball Massey)

Kyle Wright (10) bangs his way through the Irmo defense. (Photo/Kristy Kimball Massey)

BLYTHEWOOD – Friday night’s game at Richland 2 Stadium began with all the makings of a Bengals blowout of Irmo. But Blythewood’s 28-21 victory over the Yellow Jackets in on-again, off-again showers ended with a short, clutch drive engineered by a quarterback who completed just five of 16 passes on the night.

David Isreal’s 4-yard touchdown run with 52 seconds left locked down a fierce Irmo rally.

“We came out good in the first half, we just couldn’t execute on third downs,” Isreal said. “We opened up the running game in the second half and that opened up some things for me to go down field.”

Isreal’s first completion of the day was an 11-yard TD pass to Jacob McGuire, and his last completion was a 34-yard pass play to Daquan Patten that set up Isreal’s go-ahead score.

The dropped passes in between those completions are a concern for head coach Dan Morgan.

“We struggled all night, timing-wise, but we had a lot of drops by our receivers,” Morgan said. “It’s starting to become more and more of a problem, which has got us a little bit nervous, but we’ll get back at it next week and shore up a lot of the mistakes we made.”

Kyle Wright led all rushers with 113 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries.

Blythewood (4-1) cruised in the first half, but seemed befuddled with late-drive mistakes.

The Bengals got on the scoreboard early when Isreal found McGuire in the end zone from 11 yards out at the 8:48 mark of the first quarter.

Blythewood held Irmo to a three-and-out on the next possession, and a long punt return set the Bengals up at the Irmo 22-yard line. They drove to the 17 and converted on a Jordyn Adams-to-Eric Weber pass play, but that play was negated by an ineligible receiver penalty.

That penalty forced the Bengals back to the 22, and forced a 39-yard Cody Turner field goal attempt that Irmo’s Phillip Barrett blocked.

Later in the quarter, the Yellow Jackets’ Austin Cates missed on a 44-yard field goal attempt.

Blythewood then knocked out a quick seven-play, 80-yard drive that Isreal capped with an 8-yard touchdown run at 11:18 mark of the second.

Blythewood later reached the Irmo 5-yard line, but Turner’s 22-yard field goal attempt failed.

Irmo took the opening possession of the second half and drove the length of the field. Mason Smith capped the nine-play, 66-yard drive with a 9-yard touchdown run at the 7:47 mark of the third.

The Bengals kept the ball on the ground with five Wright runs on their next possession. Wright burst into the end zone from 1 yard out to finish the drive, then scored on the 2-point conversion play to give Blythewood a 21-7 lead with 11:08 to go in the game.

Then the Yellow Jackets stung the Bengals.

Irmo head coach Reggie Kennedy, a former Blythewood head coach, started using Smith as a running back, and used some trickery that Bengal defenders bit on consistently.

“Reggie (Kennedy) made some great adjustments at the half and we just didn’t,” Morgan said. “We all knew it was coming, but we can’t make the plays on it yet. But that’s OK. It’s a learning experience. We got some game film on it, and we can make it better for the rest of the year.”

Irmo knocked out a 12-play, 85-yard drive with Smith connecting with Jeffery Tharp from 21 yards out to cut the Bengals’ lead to 21-14 with 6:02 left. On Blythewood’s next possession, Phillip Barrett intercepted an Isreal pass and returned it 19 yards to the 31-yard line.

Two plays later, Smith burst into the end zone from 5 yards out to even the score at 21 with 3 minutes to go.

Luckily for the Bengals, 3 minutes was plenty of time for a 50-yard scoring drive.

It didn’t end well for Irmo, but Kennedy said this game will go down as a learning experience.

“I’m proud of the way our kids played, especially in the second half,” Kennedy said. “There are four quarters in a football game, and we lost the first two. But we’ve got something to build off of.”


IHS: 0-0-7-14 – 21

BHS: 7-6-0-15 – 28

First Quarter

B – Jacob McGuire 11 pass from David Isreal (Cody Turner kick). 8:48.

Second Quarter

B – Isreal 8 run (kick failed). 11:17.

Third Quarter

I – Mason Smith 9 run (Austin Cates kick). 7:47.

Fourth Quarter

B – Kyle Wright 1 run (Wright run). 11:08.

I – Jeffery Tharp 21 pass from Smith (Cates kick). 6:02.

I – Smith 5 run (Cates kick). 3:00.

B – Isreal 4 run (Turner kick). 00:52.


Team Stats

                                         IHS                         BHS

First Downs                        21                           14

Rushes-Yards                     44-144                   34-146

Passing Yards                     148                         100

C-A-I                                   12-19-0                 5-16-1

Fumbles-Lost                     3-0                          2-0

Penalties-Yards                   7-70                       7-65

Punts-Avg.                          6-28.7                    3-38.7



RUSHING – IHS: Jeffery Tharp 11-64, Mason Smith 23-77, Shakeem Bradley 8-23. BHS: Kyle Wright 21-113, David Isreal 10-42.

PASSING – IHS: Mason Smith 18-12, 148 yards, TD. BHS: David Isreal 16-5, 100 yards, TD, INT.

RECEIVING – IHS: Ronnie Jamison 4-47, Raekwon Heath 2-32, Shakeem Bradley 2-26, Brandon Love 1-(-3). BHS: Eric Weber 2-30, Kyle Wright 1-26, Daquan Patten 1-33, Jacob McGuire 1-11.

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