Greene Central knocks off neighbor Farmville
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on September 17, 2004 1:56 PM
SNOW HILL -- Second-year Greene Central head football coach Jim Bob Bryant hadn't seen his team surpass the 100-yard mark in rushing this season. So, he developed the "150-yard rule."
Bryant surmised that if the Rams toted the pigskin with that kind of success -- against any team -- they'd have a pretty darn good chance of winning.
A freshman running back proved Bryant's theory Thursday evening and helped Greene Central claim a milestone win in two-plus decades of competition against long-time nemesis Farmville Central. Damion Phillips rushed for 100 yards in his varsity debut as the Rams knocked off the Jaguars 24-8 at the James R. Fulghum Athletic Complex.
Greene Central (3-1) upended Farmville Central at home for just the third time in the series since 1978 and eighth time overall in 26 meetings. The Rams extended their program-best home win streak to 19 games and look to continue it Sept. 24 against D.H. Conley.
Farmville Central departed 1-4.
Phillips can thank teammate Chris Hodges for his coming-out party. The 155-pound running back replaced Hodges in the lineup after the senior tailback sustained a knee injury in practice earlier this week. Bryant said a doctor is expected to examine Hodges' right knee today.
"Damion came in, ran the ball hard and did a great job," Bryant said. "The offensive line played an outstanding game and that's the reason we were able to get those rushing yards."
The Rams' front five -- right tackle Brandon Sutton, right guard J.J. Thompson, center John Flowers, left guard Kenneth Kerns and left tackle Rodney Wilkes -- dominated the line of scrimmage on every play. The Jaguars failed to adjust to Bryant's spread-offense scheme and kept just five or six defenders in the box.
The linemen sustained their blocks and opened holes for Phillips and his backfield mates. Six Greene Central backs toted the pigskin on a humid evening and three finished with more than 45 yards. Overall, the Rams accumulated a season-best 233 yards on the ground.
Quarterback Travis Rouse completed seven of 14 passes for 117 yards and used four receivers. Dreyan Willis led the receiving corps with 52 yards, including a 26-yard touchdown pass in the final quarter.
"I don't think we played with the intensity you need to play a rival team like that and our guys seemed to let the heat bother team," veteran Jaguars coach Dixon Sauls said. "We had a chance to be in the ball game, but obviously, we didn't block anybody most of the night.
"We allowed them to run the football ... we didn't stop the run and certainly we weren't able to run the ball. Those were the keys to the football game right there."
Phillips averaged 5.5 yards per carry, while the Rams picked up 6.5 yards per tote overall. The Jaguar defense didn't stop any rushers behind the line of scrimmage, which is uncharacteristic of Sauls' teams, during the 48-minute contest.
Phillips' 20-yard gallop put the Rams on the board late in the opening quarter. Tino Fernandez successfully booted the first of three PATs for a 7-0 lead.
Farmville Central answered, thanks to a muffed punt and two penalties which resulted in first downs deep inside Greene Central's red zone. The Jaguars needed five plays to cash in, getting a four-yard scamper by Quintrell Cotton late in the second quarter. Darrell Davis ran in the two-point conversion for an 8-7 advantage.
Fernandez kicked a 25-yard field goal right before halftime to make it 10-8.
Like it has in its previous home games, the Ram defense responded to challenges from its coaching staff at halftime. The Jaguars managed less than 50 yards total offense in the final 24 minutes of regulation and earned just four first downs.
Wilkes, junior linebacker Devyn Brewington, junior tackle Oscar Gamble, senior tackle Matt Whitley, junior defensive back Mike Sims and junior Dreyan Willis played solid all evening. Brewington spearheaded the defense with 11 stops. Whitley collected six tackles, while Willis, Sims and Wilkes recorded five stops apiece.
Farmville Central 0 8 0 0 -- 8
Greene Central 7 3 7 7 -- 24
GC -- D. Phillips 20 run (Fernandez kick), 3:32
FC -- Cotton 4 run (Davis run), 4:25
GC -- Fernandez 25 FG, 0:19.2
GC -- Rouse 8 run (Fernandez kick), 9:38
GC -- Willis 26 pass from Rouse (Fernandez kick), 10:45
First downs 9 17
Rushes-yds 33-70 36-233
Passing yds 43 117
Total yards 113 350
Att.-Comp.-Int. 11-4-0 15-7-0
Fumbles-lost 4-1 2-1
Punts-avg. 7-30.3 2-27.0
Penalties-yds. 2-15 5-53
RUSHING -- Greene Central -- Damion Phillips 18-100, TD; Kyle Judd 7-64; Travis Rouse 8-46, TD; Cameron Shelton 1-11; Billy Teston 2-6; Dreyan Willis 6. Farmville Central -- Quintrell Cotton 14-40, TD; Torrey Parker 8-20; Darrell Davis 5-7; Kajon Farrow 1-6; Justin Foskey 2-(-13).
PASSING -- Greene Central -- Travis Rouse 7-14-0 117, TD; Kyle Judd 0-1-0 0. Farmville Central -- Justin Foskey 4-11-0 43.
RECEIVING -- Greene Central -- Dreyan Willis 3-52, TD; Dashon Bynum 2-41; Kendrick Best 1-13; Kyle Judd 1-11. Farmville Central -- Quintrell Cotton 2-30; Kajon Ferrell 2-13.
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