James Kenan pummels Greene Central
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on September 23, 2007 2:21 AM
SNOW HILL -- Spying in high school football?
One might wonder if an unidentified figure slipped into Greene Central and James Kenan practices last week, and overheard the coaching staffs' discuss their respective strategies for the game. Ironically, each team's head coach wanted to rule time of possession.
The Tigers needed to keep the Rams' explosive passing attack off the field. Greene Central, in turn, desired to keep James Kenan's running game sidelined.
But James Kenan reigned in the end. The No. 2-ranked Tigers (6-0 overall) controlled the clock for nearly 20 minutes during a 24-minute stretch and pummeled the Rams 43-21 at the James R. Fulghum Athletic Complex.
"We knew they were going to throw the ball and a team like us will probably have more possession," said Kenan head coach Ken Avent Jr. "But you have to give credit to our defense for keeping them out of the end zone as much as they did.
"We like to hold onto the ball as long as we can. I thought our offensive line did a great job; had their best game of the year so far."
Playing in Snow Hill for the first time since 1981, the James Kenan defense permitted just 34 yards rushing and yielded two touchdowns -- a 51-yard pass from William Brown to Curtis Braswell and a 15-yard strike from Ben Parrish to Danny Whitaker. Whitaker's reception and Abel Real's PAT snapped James Kenan's 22-game streak of holding an opponent to 20 points or less.
Braswell provided the Rams' other score -- a 70-yard interception return midway through the third quarter. Greene Central logged just 17 minutes in time of possession and ran 50 offensive plays.
"They did a great job on defense shutting us down for most of the game," said Rams coach Jim Bob Bryant. "We're missing our starting tailback and an offensive tackle. It's hard to move the chains when you can't run the ball between the tackles.
"When you have to rely on the passing game and everybody knows it, it's hard to move the football."
Rams quarterback William Brown completed nine of 24 passes for 127 yards and a touchdown. He overthrew receivers on several attempts and also had a few passes dropped in single coverage.
Meanwhile, James Kenan moved the football with ease. The Tigers compiled 349 yards rushing and 485 yards of total offense on 71 plays. Brandon Satchell emerged the game's top rusher with 189 yards and two touchdowns on 39 totes.
Leading 7-0, James Kenan broke the game open in the second period. Shawn Jones threw an 18-yard, fourth-down scoring pass to Tony Jones to make it 14-0.
Brown fumbled on Greene Central's next possession and the Ram defense appeared poised to force a punt. On third down, Kenan drew a 15-yard penalty and Bryant screamed from the sideline to decline it.
The referee asked a non-team captain if he wanted to accept the penalty and the player did. Shawn Jones completed a 52-yard pass to Duan Alston and one play later, Jones plunged in from the 1.
"The official never asked me or a captain what we wanted to do on that penalty," said Bryant, whose team had the ball for just two minutes in the second quarter. "If he had looked to the sideline at all, we wanted fourth down instead of giving them an extra play. He said 'I asked number 63' and I said 'number 63 (Jesse Creech) is not even a captain.'
"You've got the captains listed on your sheet."
Kenan led 21-0 at that point.
"That obviously was huge," said Avent Jr. of the play.
The Rams pulled within 21-7, but Jorge Vasquez nailed a 31-yard field goal just before halftime. James Kenan controlled the ball for 10 of 12 minutes in the third quarter and eventually claimed its 17th consecutive regular-season victory.
James Kenan 7 17 7 12 -- 43
Greene Central 0 7 7 7 -- 21
JK -- Satchell 8 run (Vazquez kick), 7:18
JK -- T. Jones 18 pass from S. Jones (Vazquez kick), 6:02
JK -- S. Jones 1 run (Vazquez kick), 3:20
GC -- Braswell 51 pass from Brown (Real kick), 1:50
JK -- Vazquez 31 FG, 0:27.7
GC -- Braswell 70 interception return (Real kick), 5:14
JK -- Heslip 39 run (Vazquez kick), 2:02
JK -- Satchell 68 run (kick failed), 6:35
JK -- Miller 3 run (kick failed), 2:45
GC -- Whitaker 15 pass from Parrish (Real kick), 0:09.9
Kenan G. Central
First downs 19 11
Rushes-yds 54-349 20-34
Passing yds 136 162
Total yards 485 196
C-A-I 6-17-3 11-30-0
Fumbles-lost 1-0 2-2
Punts-avg. 1-31.0 4-24.5
Penalties-yds 12-100 6-60
RUSHING -- James Kenan -- Brandon Satchell 36-189, 2 TDs; Duan Alston 1-1; Darius Heslip 2-45, TD; Stedman Mathis 6-87; Jamar Rogers 1-2; Shawn Jones 4-10; Akeem Carlton 3-12; Donovan Miller 1-3. Greene Central -- Fred Edwards 6-19; William Brown 9-(-4); Tyrell Lane 3-10; Ben Parrish 2-9.
PASSING -- James Kenan -- Shawn Jones 6-17-3 136, TD. Greene Central -- William Brown 9-24-0 127, TD; Ben Parrish 2-6-0 35, TD.
RECEIVING -- James Kenan -- Tony Jones 3-61, TD; Duan Alston 1-52; Kendal Jones 1-17; Steven Outlaw 1-6. Greene Central -- Leon Speight 1-20; Danny Whitaker 1-15, TD; Curtis Braswell 4-68, TD; Jamar Branch 4-60; Brooks Best 1-(-1).
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