Ground game sparks Red Devils past Woodruff

Oct 28 Written by  MONTE DUTTON

WOODRUFF – With 8:43 remaining in the third quarter Friday night, Clinton senior Mark Wise took a handoff from Konnor Richardson 52 yards away from the Woodruff goal line.

He ran about 100, just for good measure.

Wise broke two tackles near the line of scrimmage and burst down the right sideline. Then he cut back against the grain and ran laterally across the width of the field before staggering into the end zone. Sam Tiller kicked the extra point to give the Red Devils a 28-14 lead that blossomed into a 41-21 victory and a berth in the Class 3A playoffs next Friday at Seneca.

“The offensive line was blocking and I saw a hole,” Wise recalled later. “(Down the sideline) I was out of breath and had to cut back for a minute.”

Wise scored three straight touchdowns – one, 52 and 16 yards – to hike Clinton (4-6, 2-3 Region 3-3A) from a 14-14 tie to a 35-14 lead. He and backfield mate Kris Holmes each made 26 carries. Wise gained 244 yards and Holmes 180.

Quarterback Konnor Richardson was sparse but perfect with his passing. A 14-yard, fourth-down pass to Elijah Campbell opened the game’s scoring and the two connected again for an 18-yarder in the fourth quarter. They were Richardson’s only pass attempts.

“That touchdown was a really big play,” Clinton head coach Andrew Webb said. “We had gotten a personal foul, I guess because our player blocked their guy too well. That was a big throw, big catch.”

Though Woodruff (2-8, 0-5) made it a game for a half, the Wolverines couldn’t pry the ball away from a Red Devil offense that produced 459 net yards on the ground and amassed 201 more yards (491-290) of offense. Most of the Wolverine offense came from running back Demi Dale (20-106) and quarterback Drew Lawton, who hit 12 of 17 passes for 151.

“To have that kind of success, it’s obvious we were dominant up front,” Webb said. “We kept their players out of our backfield, and we were constantly able to get four or five yards a play, sometime more, and I thought we ran the ball extremely well.

“That’s the first time we’ve run our offense that way for four quarters.”

Rasheed Smith put a cap on the Red Devils’ third consecutive victory over Woodruff with a one-yard score in an 80-yard drive, much of which was led by reserve quarterback Cameron Nichols.

Clinton’s time of possession was 31:02 to Woodruff’s 16:58. The Red Devils converted nine of 11 third downs and both their fourth-down tries.

C – Elijah Campbell 14 pass from Konnor Richardson (Sam Tiller kick) 4:02 1st

C – Kris Holmes 1 run (Tiller kick) 11:29 2nd

W – Drew Lawton 6 run (Luke Mallory kick) 7:45 2nd

W – Austin Parks 2 pass from Lawton (Mallory kick) 4:41 2nd

C – Mark Wise 1 run (Tiller kick) 1:27 2nd

C – Wise 52 run (Tiller kick) 8:43 3rd

C – Wise 16 run (Tiller kick) 11:53 4th

W – Omarion McKelvin 52 pass from Lawton (Mallory kick) 11:33 4th

C – Rasheed Smith 1 run (kick failed) 1:11 4th

RUSHING: Clinton, Wise 26-244, Holmes 26-180, Darien Bailey 5-19, Greg Sanders 3-15, Totals 64-459; Woodruff, Demi Dale 20-106, Lawton 10-33, Totals 30-139.

PASSING: Clinton, Richardson 2-2-0 32; Woodruff, Lawton 12-17-0 151.

RECEIVING: Clinton, Campbell 2-32; Woodruff, Sam Kelley 4-29, Parks 3-18, McKelvin 2-73; Marcellas Dial 1-13.

Last modified on Saturday, 28 October 2017 01:34