On the Q.T.: Thompson TDs Propel Griffins

Quentin Thompson (12) hauls in his third of three TD passes from Stanley McManus Friday. (Photo/DeAnna Robinson)

Quentin Thompson (12) hauls in his third of three TD passes from Stanley McManus Friday. (Photo/DeAnna Robinson)

DALZELL – Momentum is a fickle mistress. One minute, she’s on your side (swearing she will never leave you!), and the next minute she’s standing on your opponent’s sideline waving the wrong colored pom-poms in your face.

The Griffins had successfully wooed Mistress Momentum to a 26-0 second quarter lead over Crestwood Friday night at Donald L. Crolley Memorial Stadium, thanks largely to the sure hands of Quentin Thompson and the dead-eye accuracy of Stanley McManus. The senior tight end hauled in not one, not two, but three B-line touchdown passes from the junior quarterback Friday, the longest from 45 yards out with 7:17 left before the half as the Griffins battled to a 39-15 win.

“We were able to hit Q.T. Thompson on a couple of big plays,” Griffins head coach Demetrius Davis said. “That was huge. He had a great football game tonight. If we don’t have those plays early, I don’t know if we come out of here with this thing.”

Thompson pulled down more than 100 yards in receptions Friday on a night when McManus tossed for 148.

Add to Thompson’s tally a 1-yard run by McManus on the Griffins’ opening drive, and a safety on a high Crestwood snap a minute later, and Momentum had put the Griffins firmly in the driver’s seat in their first road test of the season.

But Momentum doesn’t like to be ignored, and before halftime a series of events culminated in the Knights cutting the Fairfield Central lead to 11 points. Crestwood was awake, and the Griffins had a ball game on their hands after all.

The Griffins returned the favor of the safety with 5:06 left in the second quarter when a snap from the Fairfield 19 sailed over McManus’s head and into the end zone. The Knights took the ensuing free kick and promptly drove to the Griffins’ 44. On second-and-10, Tiric Gadson broke through the secondary and darted into the end zone, making it 26-8 with 3:58 left before the break.

The Griffin offense, which had had its way with Crestwood since the opening gun, sputtered on their next possession and were forced to punt from their own 12. The Knights took over at the Fairfield 46 and quickly chewed up the short field, capping the drive with an 8-yard pass from Tylas Green to DaJour Neal with 20 seconds left. The point after made it 26-15, leaving the Griffins with some halftime soul searching to do.

“We got a little lethargic out there,” Davis said. “We were just kind of going through the motions. We weren’t playing with any passion. I guess because we were up 26-0. And that’s probably our Achilles heel is getting up and our kids relax. That’s on me. We’ll get that cleaned up. I had a meeting with the coaches and I had a meeting with the players. I can’t put in the newspaper what I said, but they responded.”

Whatever Davis said in the locker room, it did the trick.

The Griffins took the second half kickoff and chipped away from their own 43, with McManus carving up the Crestwood secondary and running backs Chad Sampson and Tony Ruff pounding the turf. McManus closed the deal with a 2-yard run with 5:41 left in the third, upping the Griffins’ lead to 32-15.

The Griffins added one more in the final frame on a 24-yard blast from Ruff with 8:01 left in the game, while the Fairfield defense hurled a second-half shutout.

“The last five minutes before the half and the first five minutes after the half are the most important parts of the game,” Davis said. “Offensively, we were able to come out and the offensive line got going. They responded.”

The Griffins run their record to 2-1 and will host Lee Central this Friday night at 7:30 .


FC: 20-6-6-7 – 39

C: 0-15-0-0 – 15


First Quarter

FC – Stanley McManus 1 run. Kick failed. (10:04)

FC – Defense safety. (9:09)

FC – Q.T. Thompson 27 pass from S. McManus. Pass failed. (7:11)

FC – Q.T. Thompson 28 pass from S. McManus. Kick failed. (1:52)

Second Quarter

FC – Q.T. Thompson 45 pass from S. McManus. Pass failed. (7:17)

C – Defense safety. (5:06)

C – T. Gadson 44 run. Kick failed. (3:58)

C – D. Neal 8 pass from T. Green. C. Becker kick. (0:20)

Third Quarter

FC – S. McManus 2 run. Kick blocked. (5:41)

Fourth Quarter

FC – Tony Ruff 24 run. David Williams kick. (8:01)


FC                                           C

First Downs                                        14                                           8

Rushes/Yards                                    49-202                                   19-81

Passing Yards                                     148                                         136

C-A-I-TD                                               8-15-1-3                               17-32-0-1

Fumbles/Lost                                    2-0                                          4-2

Penalties/Yards                                                11-87                                     12-93


RUSHING: FC – Roderick Sparks 3-0, Jerrell Suber-O’Neal 16-54, Stanley McManus 12-63, Chad Sampson 8-25, Harvey Kinsler 1-11, Tony Ruff 10-49. C – T. Albert 8-27, T. Gadson 5-55, T. Green 6-(-1).

RECEIVING: FC – Rodric Sparks 1-7, Q.T. Sampson 4-108, Raekwon Butler 1-10, Bryan Young 1-9, Roderick Sparks 1-14. C – J. Pearson 8-27, M. Bailey 2-7, T. Gadson 3-39, J. Weathers 1-2, C. Benjamin 3-42, T. Albert 1-3, D. Neal 1-8.

PASSING: FC – Stanley McManus 8-15, 148 yards, INT, 3 TD. C – T. Green 17-32, 136 yards, TD.

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