Ellis, SD dominate in football wins

Published 9:50 am Thursday, September 22, 2016

Tate Carney broke two touchdown runs – his total could have been four if not for penalties – and the Ellis football team’s defense pitched another shutout as the Jaguars smothered visiting Starmount 28-0 on Sept. 14.

The only touchdown in the first half was a Carney run in which he was hit in the backfield but refused to be stopped. Ellis’ lead was 8-0 at intermission. Za’haree Maddox took the second-half kickoff 70 yards. He broke three tackles before going to the house. “(Maddox) gave us the spark that we needed,” coach Johnny Hill said.

Later in the third quarter, Carney turned a broken play into a touchdown as Ellis’ lead grew to 22-0. Isaac Webb capped the scoring with a run to the end zone. The Jaguars avenged a 14-8 loss in 2015 and started 2-0 for the seventh time in eight years. “We moved the ball very well,” Hill said. “Tate had two long runs called back due to penalties. Za’haree and Jake Hill also ran the ball well.”

The play of d-linemen Shaemarr Hairston, Camden Beck, Nate Hampton and Hill allowed the linebackers (Carney, Webb and Trevor Richardson) and DBs (Robert Butcher, Beavan Arey, Justus Tatum and Maddox) to bring the heat. Ellis recorded back-to-back shutouts for the first time since 34-0 and 30-0 decisions in 2014.

“I’m not sure Starmount crossed midfield in the second half,” Hill said. “We were swarming to the ball like we practice and it was fun to watch. Our linebackers had a great game because they were able to fly around and make tackles. (Butcher, Arey, Tatum and Maddox) were all over the field and didn’t let their backs get outside.”

Even though South Davie crushed visiting Lexington 30-13 on Sept. 14, offensive coordinator Germain Mayfield said the Tigers are far from a finished product. “We didn’t play well,” he said. “We had two bad days of practice, and I was afraid we weren’t going to play well. We didn’t look like we had gotten any better.”

It was still a dismantling performance for the Tigers, who led 22-0 before Lexington got on the board against defensive subs.

MJ Holleman went 6 of 11 for 82 passing yards, but his yards could have been north of 150.

“We had five holding penalties when we had big plays in the passing game,” Mayfield said. “They were all plays for 15-plus yards.”

Jack Reynolds had three catches for 51 yards. Isaiah Lytton, Gage Recktenwald and Ben Crenshaw had one each, with Crenshaw catching a TD.

Devonte Lyerly gained 70 yards on five carries and scored on a 70-yard kickoff return. Holleman (5 carries for 40 yards), Jordan Thompson (4 carries for 20) and Recktenwald (11-yard TD run) added to the rushing numbers.

The Rams did not scratch against South’s first-team defense. The d-line of Caleb Steele, Ivan Poag, Davy Marion and JT Bumgarner and linebackers Holleman, Thompson, Edgar Ramos, Recktenwald and Lyerly wreaked havoc as South began 2-0 for the fifth year in a row.

Lytton, a cornerback, had an interception that he returned 40 yards. “He almost took it to the house,” head coach Perry Long said. “We needed one last block. He’s going to be a special kid if he ever learns what talent he’s got.”

Marion, a two-way force on the OL and DL, played limited minutes because of sickness.

North Davie (0-1) had a bye.