football

Undermanned Salem Survives

1177397
style='font-size:10.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif";
background:yellow;mso-highlight:yellow'>Without Bucky, SunDevils
Survive Scare:
style='font-size:10.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'>
style=>
line-height:115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'>The third-seeded Salem
class=SpellE>SunDevils went into Friday night's Eastern Region Division
6 quarterfinal playoff matchup against the sixth-seeded Grassfield
Grizzlies on upset alert, even well before the game kicked off at 7:30 PM.
style=> Among the reasons were the fact
class=SpellE>Grassfield was making its fifth consecutive postseason
appearance and Salem had some important parts of its attack out due to injury.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Salem played without starting quarterback and Virginia
Tech commit Bucky Hodges, who sat
out with what the coaching staff called a hand contusion.
style=> Also out were starting tailback
class=SpellE>Torron
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'> Person as well as starting defensive
backs Torrance Brown and
class=SpellE>Khalib
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'> Brown.
The undermanned SunDevils pulled ahead on an
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'>Andre Toran touchdown
with 5:04 remaining and held the pesky Grizzlies off, 18-13 to punch their
ticket to the regional semifinals for the third year in a row.
style=>

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"Looking at this game tonight, I can't say enough about
our kids. We had some adversity tonight.
style=> They went out and played hard, and that's
just the type of kids we have here at Salem.
At least five starters [were] out and hopefully we'll get those guys
back next week," declared Salem Head Football Coach
normal'>Robert Jackson.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"I give Coach [Vincent]
Pugh and my defensive staff all the
credit. We knew with Bucky being out we
were especially going to need them tonight."

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Salem turned to its defense to preserve the lead late
as Grassfield converted a 4th & 15 with a 43-yard
pass from Blake LaRussa
to Paris Smith to put the
Grizzlies inside the red zone with under three minutes to play.
style=> Anchored by seniors at three levels with
defensive end Rainney
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'> Thompson, linebacker and
class=SpellE>Hokies commit Andrew
Motu'apuaka and cornerback
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'>Kwamane
normal'> Bowens, the SunDevils didn't let
class=SpellE>Grassfield get any closer than that 14-yard line on its
final possession when the Grizz watched a
class=SpellE>LaRussa pass in the end zone on fourth down fall
incomplete.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"We all had to make plays.
style=> Drew and I were out there telling everybody
to dig deep, it's in our heart. You've
got to have fight. We're seniors and we
have to go out with a bang," stated Bowens, who played a versatile role all
night long.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"There's no I in team for a
reason. Even with Bucky out, we've still
got to correct some things."

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>That would include penalties.
style=> Salem was flagged for 15, costing them 123
yards. A roughing the passer penalty
early in the fourth quarter helped Grassfield get
closer to the end zone, and senior Marcus
Mitchell punched in a touchdown from four yards to give them a 13-12 lead
with 8:45 remaining.

Ouzckdp7oth5odz0vkec
"Verdana","sans-serif"'>
Starting in place of Hodges at quarterback was freshman
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'>Jarrel
normal'> Lightbody, who got moved up from the
J.V. team and completed 8 of 12 passes for 120 yards.
style=>

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>In addition to the injuries and penalties, Salem
overcame losing the turnover battle and giving up a 40-yard punt return for a
touchdown by Grassfield's
normal'>Tyler McKenzie. But Bowens
and Motu'apuaka helped bail them out.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>A standout at receiver who had over 200 yards receiving
in a playoff game a year ago, Bowens caught four balls for 78 yards in the
first half before being moved to Wildcat quarterback, where he rushed for 111
yards and a touchdown on 12 attempts to go with two pass completions - - both
to Motu'apuaka - - for 33 yards.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"I had to go back in my old playbook when Kevin
[Whaley] and them were here," Jackson noted."

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>With so many bumps and bruises all across its roster,
Salem needed Bowens and Motu'apuaka, who also ran the
ball three times for 10 yards, to do more.
They delivered with its season hanging by a thread.
style=>

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"Bucky went down, our backup after Bucky went down and
our freshman played a good game for us with his first game starting.
style=> Everybody felt like they had to step up,
including all the backups," said Motu'apuaka, who did
some blocking on offense on running plays, too.
style=>

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"I told Swammie (Bowens) to
run right behind me and I've got him. We
had to put the team on our back and come out with the win."

style='font-size:10.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'>
Read
Full Recap Here
Postgame
Audio with Salem Head Football Coach Robert Jackson

style='font-size:10.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'>
Stats:

style='font-size:10.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Salem
18:
style='font-size:10.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'>
style=> (10-1 overall)
Kwamane Bowens - - 2-3 for 33Yds; 12Car.
class=GramE>111Yds. TD; 4Rec. 78Yds.
Jarrel
class=SpellE>Lightbody - - 8-12 for 120Yds. 0-2TD/Int. ratio
Daijon Bland - - 14Car. 30Yds. TD
Kyree Burton - - 3Car. 26Yds; 2Rec.
29Yds.
Andrew Motu'apuaka - - 3Car. 10Yds; 2Rec. 33Yds; 6
Tackles, TFL
Rainney Thompson - - 5 Tackles, 3TFL, 2 Sacks
Andre Cason - - 5 Tackles

style='font-size:10.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Grassfield
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'>
line-height:115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'> 13:
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'>
115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'>
(8-3 overall)
Blake LaRussa - - 10-27 for 158Yds; 5Car. 15Yds
class=GramE>.
Marcus Mitchell - - 5Car. 60Yds; 9 Tackles, 2TFL
Isaiah Harper - - 13Car. 32Yds; 1Rec. 7Yds; INT
Tyler Gibson - - 4Rec. 74Yds.
Paris Smith - - 3Rec. 68Yds; 6 Tackles
Beltran Skinner - - 9 Tackles, 2TFL
Blake Pitre - - 7 Tackles, 2TFL
style='font-size:10.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Verdana","sans-serif"'>

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>

 

style='mso-bidi-font-style:normal'>
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";text-decoration:none;text-underline:
none'>Matthew Hatfield
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>
has covered Eastern Region Football & Basketball since 2004 for
href="http://www.virginiapreps.com">
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>VirginiaPreps.com
style='mso-bidi-font-style:normal'>
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>, part of the Rivals.com
Network. Check out
href="http://www.twitter.com/hatfieldsports">
normal'>
text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>Hatfield's Twitter page
style='mso-bidi-font-style:normal'>
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'> for more sports related updates,
and you can also read his work in the
href="http://www.suffolknewsherald.com">
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>Suffolk News Herald
style='mso-bidi-font-style:normal'>
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>.
To contact Matthew, please e-mail
href="mailto:hatfieldsports2k4@yahoo.com">
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>hatfieldsports2k4@yahoo.com
style='mso-bidi-font-style:normal'>
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>, and don't forget to listen to him
on the VirginiaPreps.com Hour every Saturday at 11AM on
href="http://www.espnradio941.com/">
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>ESPN Radio 94.1
style='mso-bidi-font-style:normal'>
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'> plus watch him on the
href="http://www.cox11.com">
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>Cox 11 Sports Report
style='mso-bidi-font-style:normal'>
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>.
normal'>

Sign up for premium access to VirginiaPreps.com with a 7-day free trial!
Check out our FREE top prospect listings:
Class of 2012 |
Class of 2013 |
Class of 2014
The
VIP Board provides the latest in recruiting updates plus in-depth top
prospects lists for football, basketball and baseball!
---------------------
Edit