Griffins struggle at home with Ridge View

WINNSBORO- The Fairfield Central Griffins were back home this week, after a loss to Blythewood on the road last week, to face perhaps their most difficult challenger of the season – a stout Ridge View Blazer team. Fairfield, now 2-2, kept the Blazers, 3-1, close most of the night, but Ridge View proved to be too much for the Griffins, and handed Fairfield a 35-19 loss on their home field.

“Definitely, Blythewood and Ridge View were better competition,” said Griffins head coach Demetrious Davis. “Offensively, we still got some tweaking, some things that we got to get done. Hopefully we can get them done before region time, so that we can make a run at this thing.”

Both defenses traded clinics in the first, and after six full possessions in the first quarter, everything was knotted up at zero. The closest either team came to a score in the first period was after two consecutive roughing-the-passer penalties on the Griffins pushed the Blazers up to the 30.

Antonio Jackson narrowly misses the fingertips of the Ridge View defender. | Photos/Joe Seibles

Then Byrd came up with a big sack on third and eight to put an end to the Blazer’s sole promising drive of the first. The Griffins had an encouraging drive going after the Byrd sack, and quarterback Antonio Jackson ripped off a pass of 15 yards and a scramble for 16 yards that landed them at the Ridge View 43.

The Griffins handed the ball off to Tony Ruff on the next play, but the Blazers got in to strip the ball, and recovered on their own 43. They proceeded to trade three and outs again, before the Griffins punted the ball off to Ridge View.

Damion Daley kicked off the drive with a 10-yard scramble on an option run, and then quarterback JaVon Anderson busted the drive wide open with a pass to Waylan Napper. Napper scrambled around the Griffin tacklers after the catch, and ended up with a 27-yard pass that landed the Blazers on the Fairfield 35.

Penalties caught up with the Griffins again on the next play. Anderson completed a short four-yard dump-off pass to Bernard Porter, but after the play, the Griffins committed their third roughing-the-passer penalty.

A couple of plays after the costly penalty, Anderson completed a 16-yard touchdown pass to Tyler Mitchell, the third receiver that he completed a pass to on the drive. Nick Lawyer nailed the extra point, and Ridge View went ahead 7-0.

Fairfield went three and out on the next drive, and the Blazers followed suit with a three and out of their own, but on the ensuing Blazer punt the turnover bug bit the Griffins again. As Fairfield attempted to field the punt, the ball was stripped again, and the Blazers recovered with primo field position at the Griffins 30.

Trashad Jett led off with a 10-yard rush, but again after the play the Griffins committed another 15-yard penalty, this time with the call of unnecessary roughness. It moved Ridge View up to the five-yard line. They scored on the very next play, on a Brandon Jackson rushing touchdown, and hit the extra point to go up 14-0.

The Griffins took over on their own 31, and begin to chip away at the Blazers defense with a series of shorts runs that earned them a first down, and got close to a second one. Antonio Jackson heaved the ball deep on second and two, and even though the ball feel incomplete, it was good enough to draw a pass-interference call on the Blazer secondary.

The penalty landed the Griffins on the Ridge View 26, and after earning another first down on the ground, Jackson completed to Rodgriguez Edmonds for 13 yards. Edmonds capped the drive off with a scoring run, and they converted the extra point to pull within seven.

Ridge View was quickly forced up against a long third and 13, but JaVon Anderson came through with a 57-yard pass to get inside the Griffins’ 20. The Blazers quickly whiffed on three straight incomplete passes, and had to settle for a 29-yard field goal that fell well short of its mark.

Fairfield took over on their 20 with just under a minute remaining before the end of the half. The drive started with a three-yard Jamon Jackson rush, but on the next play the Ridge View defense applied the pressure to Antonio Jackson. As Jackson went down, he heaved the ball backwards.

The ball came to rest in the Fairfield endzone, and the Ridge View defender, Trashad Jett, landed on the ball for another Blazer score. Just like that, instead of being down just one touchdown going into the locker room, the deficit leaped to 14.

“I think it played a big part in it,” Davis said of the turnovers’ effect on the results. “I don’t know if the turnovers were as bad as those penalties. We ended up getting three or four roughing-the-passer calls. When you play a team of that caliber you can’t afford the penalties and you can’t afford the turnovers.”

A disappointing end to the first half led to an equally disappointing opening to the second half for Fairfield. Ridge View took over on their own 40, but on the first play of the drive Waylan Napper hit Bernard Porter wide open for a 60-yard touchdown to give the Blazers a three-score lead.

“I always tell my kids the biggest part of the ball game is the three minutes right before the half, and three minutes after the half,” Davis said. “If you take out those three minutes, it’s a whole different ballgame.”

A couple of drives and a Griffin interception later, Fairfield finally found some offensive momentum in the form of a nearly five-minute, 10-play drive that culminated in a four-yard Jamon Jackson rushing score.

Ridge View effectively put an end to the game when they cashed in with a long drive of their own that milked the clock down to below 30 seconds and ended with a two-yard Tyler Mitchell touchdown run.

Antonio Jackson hit up J.R. Edmonds for a 71-yard score as the remaining time drained off the clock. Fairfield hosts Newberry next week.

Newberry boasts a perfect 4-0 record this year, and most recently beat Chapin, 21-14.


FCHS- 0-7-0-12-19
RVHS- 0-21-7-7-35

Second Quarter
RVHS – Tyler Mitchell 16 pass from JaVon Anderson (Nick Lawyer kick). 10:41.
RVHS – Brandon Jackson 5 run (N.Lawyer kick ). 7:00.
FCHS – Rodriguez Edmonds 3 run (Antonio Aguilera kick). 2:09.
RVHS – Trashad Jett 0 fumble recovery (Nick Lawyer kick). :40.
Third Quarter
RVHS – Bernard Porter 60 pass from Waylan Napper (N.Lawyer kick). 11:36
Fourth Quarter
FCHS – Jamon Jackson 4 run (A.Aguilera kick no good). 4:59
RVHS – Tyler Mitchell 2 run (N.Lawyer kick). :20.
FCHS – JR Edmonds 71 pass from Antonio Jackson (Two point run failed). :02.

First Downs 14 16
Rushes-Yards 36-182 26-99
Passing Yards 119 223
C-A-I-TD 10-18-1-1 10-26-1-2
Fumbles-Lost 3-3 0-0
Penalties-Yards 9-105 4-45

Rushing: FCHS – Tony Ruff 6-21, Jamon Jackson 13-45, Rodriguez Edmonds 5-12, Antonio Jackson 11-94,Montavious Thompson 1-10. RVHS – Waylan Napper 1-4, JaVon Anderson 1-3, Brandon Jackson 1-5, Damion Daley 3-24, Tyler Mitchell 13-29, Cori Davis 2-6. Trashad Jett 5-26.
Receiving: FCHS- JR Edmonds 4-76, CJ Simmons 2-1, Tykedrist Gibson 1-16, Rodriguez Edmonds 2-13, Montavious Thompson 1-2, Jamas Goins 1-11. RVHS – Waylan Napper 1-27, Bernard Porter 5-147, Tyler Mitchell 1-16, Cori Davis 1-19, McKale Yanogacio 1-5, Mykel Martin 1-9.
Passing: FCHS -Antonio Jackson 10-18, 119 yards, one touchdown, one interception. RVHS – JaVon Anderson 8-21, 158 yards, one touchdown; Waylan Napper 2-4, 65 yards, one touchdown.

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