Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Bright Lights, Rivalry Games, and Bud Heavy-Metro Spirit 10-13

To mistakenly say it was just a rivalry game would mean you had not done your due diligence. Oh no. There was a lot more than just pride on the line during this year’s Greenbrier-Evans game. What was up for grabs was an outside shot at postseason play, with the victor not only getting their first region win, but also staying in the “sure, things might look over, but don’t go sleeping on ______!!” conversation that we relish in having over the next few months. Yes, that interchangeable phrase that’s as frustrating to as the mound of leaves slowly piling up in your backyard.

Rare are the times when you can battle your way back into playoff contention after starting 0-2 in region play. To catch enough breaks that late in the season, much less play in a sub-region where the standard bearers are as great (Statesboro) and as talented (Lakeside) as many in the state, you got a better shot at getting a job by #OccupyingWallStreet.

In the tightly contested matchup, we saw Greenbrier get multiple key stops against the Evans offense. No series of them more essential than the first four possessions of the second half, when Greenbrier’s defense only gave up one field goal.

The Wolfpack offense sputtered at times, but did get the ball into their playmakers (Jahvon Hardrick, Jeremy Harden, and Thomas Brown) hands enough to keep the Evans defense honest throughout the game. Evans had many opportunities to put the game away, but at times showed some immaturity that comes with having talented underclassman in game-changing positions for the first time.

Watching a strategic defensive battle where ball control and time of possession are essential is fun to watch. Man on man, three yards and a cloud of dust. Nothing flashy, just America’s game.

“To hell with exciting. I’d rather be drab as hell and win.” That’s how legendary Ohio State head coach Woody Hayes described his offensive philosophy.

Thankfully for the fans at the Lexington-North Augusta game last Friday, neither coach channeled their inner Woody Hayes.

It was one of the biggest games of the year and as the stadium lights brilliantly pierced through the fall night, the stars of the Palmetto state dazzled for all to see. Yellow Jacket quarterback Tyrell Hillary was 23 of 38 for 331 yards, with five touchdowns and one interception. All night he worked the Lexington defense, hitting his receivers, like Montez McGuire (8 catches 125 yards, 1 TD) and even connecting with stud running back Vinny Miller on a receiving touchdown to go along with his usual course load (32 carries 158 yards 2 TDs). Also in the mood for a good ole’ fashioned shootout, Lexington brought a six-shooter of their own.

Shaq Roland, the #1 ranked player in South Carolina—also a South Carolina commit—brought heat with his nine catch, 176 yard and three touchdown clinic from the wide receiver position to go along with his two carries for 32 yards and two touchdowns while running the rock.The Wildcats proved to be too much for the Yellow Jackets—though the game was decided late and did have a cloud of smoke surrounding the finish—and dealt them the first blow to their very promising season.

Games to Watch

Hephzibah @ Butler-Thursday- 7pm- TV: Digital 6.2, Knology/Atlantic Broadband 246, Comcast 380
Bulldogs look to get back on track after a big loss to Washington County last week.

South Effingham @ Lakeside-Friday-7:30
South Effingham ruined Evans’ homecoming a few weeks ago. Can they return to Augusta and deal the Panthers a loss?

Eau Claire @ Strom Thurmond-Friday-7:30
Three more wins and the Rebels have an undefeated regular season. Don’t slip now!

College/NFL Games to Watch

No. 20 Baylor @ No. 21 Texas A&M- Saturday-12pm-FX
Robert Griffin III is one of the most exciting players in the country. Do yourself a favor and watch this game.

Carolina Panthers @ Atlanta Falcons-Sunday-1pm-FOX

Homecoming for Cam Newton (Westlake High School) and his feisty group of 1-4 Panthers are hungry for another win. You can’t pencil in a win against them like you used to, Falcons.

Dallas @ New England-Sunday-4:15-FOX
Are you kidding me? America’s team vs. America’s team? I might have to switch to Budweiser for this one. Trust me. It’s the American thing to do.

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