Latest Team Rankings
Free Text Alerts
|ShopMobileRadio RSSRivals.com Yahoo! Sports|
|College Teams||High Schools|
September 15, 2013
Following up their 42-2 rout of Lake Taylor in the season opener on national television in Norfolk, the Oscar Smith Tigers put together another thoroughly dominating performance this past Saturday when they traveled to play the Indian River Braves in Chesapeake. Oscar Smith cruised from start to finish by never allowing the opposition in the red zone and racking up 415 yards of offense in three quarters on their way to a 61-0 running clock shutout.
Of Indian River's 42 offensive plays, 15 were for negative yardage and four more resulted in turnovers as the Tigers smothered them from beginning to end. Senior linebacker Marquise Cooke led the charge with six tackles, four of them for loss and a pair of sacks, to go with a touchdown run on offense. The defensive line trio of All-American Andrew Brown (UVA commit), junior star Josh Sweat and senior d-end Chris White combined for nine tackles for loss.
"I was very happy with our defense. I thought they played outstanding assignment football," remarked Oscar Smith Head Coach Rich Morgan, now 127-16 overall at the helm of the Tigers. "Marquise certainly was a leader out there, but all of them played well. We had interceptions, fumble recoveries, sacks and played well all-around on defense."
Offensively, the Tigers were led by their two BCS-level playmakers in senior wideout Jaylen Bradshaw, a Virginia Tech commit, and junior tailback Deshawn McClease. On 19 carries, McClease ran for 115 yards and a career-high five touchdowns. Meanwhile, Bradshaw hauled in eight passes for 119 yards and scored his fourth touchdown of the season on a 37-yard pass from freshman Shon Mitchell.
Oscar Smith operated with two quarterbacks on the afternoon in Mitchell and junior Shawn 'Kody' Comparto. Mitchell connected on 16 of 28 passes for 208 yards without a turnover. Comparto was picked off once, but did complete 6 of 9 passes for 98 yards and a 10-yard touchdown to sophomore reserve Josh Gray. The tandem of Mitchell and Comparto spread the ball around to seven different receivers with Bradshaw, McClease, Monty Fenner, Tristan Cahill and Kamathi Holsey all catching multiple passes in the contest against their city rival.
Though the offense would go on to pile up 472 yards and score on each of their first five offensive possessions of the second half, Morgan saw some correctable mistakes.
"We made a couple bad decisions on reads from the quarterback spot, but we also dropped six or seven passes and two of them were in the end zone. That's uncharacteristic of our guys. We don't usually drop six or seven balls in a practice week, and today I don't know what was going on. You can believe me that'll be fixed on Monday," he noted.
"We were almost playing in quicksand a little bit. We were slow and I don't know why we were so slow, but eventually we broke out of it and made the plays were supposed to make. They're kids, you've got to correct them when they do wrong and praise them when they do right. I praise them for the second half. They were almost unstoppable."
Of Indian River's 47 total yards of offense, freshman Devon Hunter accounted for 31 of them. He also made an interception, a pass breakup and had two tackles on defense. The Braves fell to 0-2 and have now been shutout in both of their regular season games to this point.
Oscar Smith is 2-0 overall and ran their Southeastern District regular season winning streak to 57. While their offense is averaging 51.5PPG, the headline unit thus far has been their defense by not allowing an offensive touchdown in eight quarters of play.
"They've been absolutely tremendous," Morgan said. "Our receivers have given us big plays, Deshawn McClease has given us big plays, and our quarterbacks have played very well in spurts. It's a long season and we're going to keep getting better and better."
Up next for Oscar Smith will be a home matchup with Western Branch, which moved to 2-0 overall after steamrolling Hickory 50-7.
There's been plenty of buzz and hype about the upcoming battle dating back to the off-season as the Bruins will attempt to become the first team from the Southeastern District to knock off Oscar Smith since Hickory did it in 2006.
"We've been doing this a long time. Last I checked the games were played in between the lines and are not played on social media, even though some people like to play them on social media," Morgan pointed out. "We're just going to show up Friday night like we do every Friday like we've been doing for the last 12 years and play our football."
Smith Tigers 61: (2-0 Overall)
River Braves 0: (0-2 Overall)
Matthew Hatfield has covered football and basketball since 2004 for VirginiaPreps.com, part of the Rivals.com Network. Check out Hatfield's Twitter page for more sports related updates, and you can also read his work in the Suffolk News Herald. To contact Matthew, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, and don't forget to listen to him every Saturday at 10AM on ESPN Radio 94.1, plus watch him on the Cox 11 Sports Report.