Griffins lose 3rd in a row at home

WINNSBORO – The Fairfield Central Griffins were just moments away from putting the first blemish on the record of the Newberry Bulldogs, but with three seconds remaining Newberry came through on a clutch two-point conversion and locked up a 22-21 victory. The loss drops Fairfield to 2-3 and improves Newberry to a perfect 5-0 for the year.

“I’ll be honest I thought we were in great shape,” Griffins’ head coach Demetrius Davis said on the two-point conversion.  “We had a guy sitting there waiting for him, he just kind of got to the pylon and was able to get inside the pylon. It was a tough deal but at the end of the day it was just one play.”

Montavious Thompson (12) takes the snap and stays behind his blocker Jamon Jackson (3) as he hits the corner. | Photos/DeAnna Robinson

The inaugural drive of the game belonged to the Bulldogs, but it was stifled and they punted the ball after just three plays. Senior quarterback Antonio Jackson led the Griffins onto the field to begin their opening drive on their own 48-yard line, and the results were much better than the Bulldogs’ first effort.

Jamon Jackson sparked the drive on the first play with an 11-yard run to quickly enter Newberry territory. Antonio Jackson’s first completion of the game came on the next play, and it went for 13 yards.

Those plays set the stage for Rodriguez Edmonds to finish off the drive with a 28-yard rushing touchdown. Antonio Aguilera knocked the extra point through to give the Griffins a 7-0 lead that lasted until a long Newberry scoring drive a couple of drives later.

After a couple of defensive stalemates, Newberry got possession on their own 16. The drive moved slowly at first. A couple of short rushes got the Bulldogs to the 25, but a 38-yard run from Amir Abrams busted the drive wide open.

KT Robinson ripped the Griffins’ defense again a couple of plays later with a 26-yard run that took Newberry to the Fairfield nine-yard line. Abrams polished off the three-minute, nine-play drive with a six-yard rushing score that tied the game up.

The Bulldog lead only survived for one drive. When the Griffins got the ball back on their own 10 they marched down the field 90 yards for their second score. Fairfield had some hard breaks when the drive began; they were quickly handed a third-and-19, but Antonio Jackson kept the drive alive with a 20-yard pass to Jamon Jackson.

A couple of plays after the long third down conversion, Tony Ruff ripped off a 17-yard run that moved the Griffins past midfield. Jamon Jackson followed the Ruff run with another big 17-yard rush.

Antonio Jackson kept the drive moving with a seven-yard run, and finally it was Jackson who found the end-zone on a quarterback keeper. Jackson dragged the Bulldog defenders on his back across the goal line.

After the Griffins score, Newberry took over on their own 27 with nine minutes remaining. The Bulldogs quickly went on the move, and after their first four plays they had already collected two first-downs.

Rodriguez Edmonds (33) weaves through the Newberry defensive line and explodes into the open field.

Amir Abrams secured the first long play of the drive with a 15-yard run and landed at the Griffins 35. The Bulldogs picked up another first down to move inside the Griffins 20, but after three straight incomplete passes they were forced to a fourth-and-11.

Bulldog quarterback Tyriq Goodman hurled the ball to the end-zone on the fourth down attempt, but the ball was knocked down. However, the yellow penalty flags came out, and the call was a pass interference against the Griffins, which allowed Newberry to continue their drive.

With the penalty keeping the drive alive, Newberry tied the game at 14 a couple of plays later from a 13-yard Amir Abrams rushing score. The Griffins got the ball back with two minutes before the half, but were unable to move the ball.

Last week against Ridge View, the Griffins allowed a score on the first drive of the second half, but this time it was Fairfield who came out with momentum after halftime. A bad kick and an offsides by Newberry allowed to Fairfield to start the drive on their own 42.

Fairfield worked themselves into Newberry territory after a series of short runs and passes. After a pass from Antonio Jackson to Jamas Goins moved the Griffins up 12 yards, Rodriguez Edmonds bolted 34 yards to the end-zone.

The Griffins’ defense took the reins after the early second-half score and shut Newberry out the majority of the second half, until Newberry got the ball back with 4:51 left to go in the game.

Newberry earned a couple of first downs and quickly moved past mid-field. The Bulldogs nearly had a meltdown when Tyriq Goodman fumbled the snap, but he was able to fall on the ball and keep the drive going.

Goodman earned a big first down with an 11-yard rush, on third-and-eight with 1:45 left. The Bulldogs pushed the ball on the ground and eventually got the ball down inside the Griffin 12-yard line.

Tyriq Goodman took a shot at the end-zone on second down, but again a Fairfield pass interference call cost the Griffins. Two plays after the pass interference, Goodman scrambled into the end-zone with three seconds on the clock.

“That first pass interference was crucial right there before the half,” Davis said. “Our guy, I thought was in really good position, and it’s fourth down and 13 and they kind of bailed them out there, and gave them an opportunity score the next play.  The second interference call I could understand more it was more of a pass interference. At the end of the day it shouldn’t come down to that we should be able to play good enough that we can overcome some of those penalties late in the game.”

Instead of going for the game tying extra-point attempt, the Bulldogs sent out their two-point team. Goodman again kept the ball for himself and found the end-zone on the pivotal two-point conversion.

Newberry took the 22-21 lead, and after an unsuccessful series of Griffins laterals on the kickoff, they secured the tight win.

The Griffins will take another crack at ending their skid when they take on A.C. Flora at home next week.

“I just think we got to get a little better each week,” Davis said. “We just got to get to the point where we can finish the games. Putting this schedule together that was kind of the concept that we wanted, we wanted to play some tough teams so that we’ll be able to get in the playoffs and we’ll be used to a tough game.”

Scoring

FCHS–  7-7-7-0-21

RVHS– 7-7-0-8–22

First Quarter

FCHS – Tony Ruff 28 run (Antonio Aguilera kick). 9:10.

NHS – Amir Abrams 6 run (Ulises Benitez kick). 3:15.

Second Quarter

FCHS – Antonio Jackson 13 run (A.Aguilera kick). 9:20.

NHS – A.Abrams 13 run (U.Benitez kick). 2:43.

Third Quarter

FCHS – Rodriguez Edmonds 34 run (A.Aguilera kick). 9:59.

Fourth Quarter

NHS – Tyriq Goodman 7 run (T.Goodman run). :03.

TEAM SCORING       FCHS                                                                 NHS

First Downs                13                                                                      16

Rushes/Yards             33-238                                                            32-218

Passing Yards             88                                                                    36

C-A-I-TD                   7-15-0-0                                                            7-18-0-0

Fumbles/ Lost             3/0                                                                 2/1

Penalties/Yards            11-83                                                             6-30

INDIVIDUAL SCORING

Rushing:   FCHS – Tony Ruff 11-99, Jamon Jackson 9-53, Rodriguez Edmonds 6-58, Antonio Jackson 5-22,Montavious Thompson 2-6. NHS – Tyriq Goodman 7-28, Amir Abrams 22-158, KT Robinson 3-32.

Receiving:  FCHS- JR Edmonds 2- 18,  Jamas Goins 1-9, Jamon Jackson 2-39, Ah’Quil Ross 1-13, Kimoni Harris 1-9. NHS – Jaleel Gillam 2-15, Zsymere Epps 3-15, Amir Abrams 2-6.

Passing: FCHS – Antonio Jackson 7-15, 88 yards. NHS –  Tyriq Goodman 7-18, 36 yards.

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