10/04/11 — Cleveland - S.Wayne

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Cleveland - S.Wayne

By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on October 4, 2011 1:50 PM

DUDLEY -- Cleveland High School head football coach Marc Morris is building a winner one brick at a time on the Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference lot.

Morris added the latest block in a 24-21 victory over Southern Wayne on Monday night. The game was originally scheduled for Friday night, but lightning knocked out power to the Doyle Whitfield Athletic Complex.

"I cannot tell you how happy it makes me as a coach to see these guys play well on the road in a tough environment," Morris said after the game. "We got behind twice in the second half, and each time our offense went out and played with confidence and got us the lead back."

Cleveland opened the game with a long drive that ended with a touchdown run by Alex Swain to give it a 7-0 lead. Southern Wayne immediately answered with a long drive that reached the end zone when Jamie Dove raced 39 yards to pay dirt. A missed extra point kept the Rams ahead 7-6.

On the Saints' next drive, quarterback Sam Ferrell ran around the left edge and toward the end zone from eight yards out. Ferrell fumbled the ball into the end zone as he was hit at the two-yard line and the miscue was grabbed by Spencer Parker for a Saints touchdown.

Tre Joyner took the ball and led the Rams on a 74-yard drive that culminated with a two-yard touchdown run just before halftime. Joyner's extra point gave the Rams a 14-12 lead.

"We had two chances to make an interception on that drive and both times we couldn't hold on," Saints head coach David Lee said. "A penalty on third and long gave them a first down and they made the most of it."

Southern Wayne took the ball and drove into scoring position. Jose Rodriquez gave the Saints a 15-14 lead at the end of the third quarter with a 37-yard field goal. Joyner answered with a 27-yard field goal of his own on the Rams' ensuing possession that made the score 17-15 midway through the fourth quarter.

Southern Wayne seized the lead on the next drive as Dove once again found open space and raced to pay dirt from 10 yards out.

"We knew at that point that it was up to us to go win it," Joyner said. "Southern Wayne scored, and some of our guys put their head down like it was over. I knew it was my job to pump the guys up and make a play."

And make a play he did.

On the second play of the Rams' ensuing drive, Joyner raced 16 yards for a first down. Three plays later, he hit Swain on a screen play that went 18 yards on third and 18. Southern Wayne jumped offsides on fourth down and kept the drive alive. Joyner ran for eight yards on the next play, then 10 yards and then handed off to Swain for a one-yard gain that put the Rams at the four yard line.

On second and goal with less than two minutes to play, Joyner raced around the right end and scored the winning touchdown.

"You have to give Cleveland credit," Lee said "Every time that they had to make a play tonight they did."

Joyner finished with 112 yards on the ground on 19 carries. He added 99 yards through the air on nine completions. Southern Wayne was led by Andrew Mathews' 97 yards on 18 carries. Dove added 93 yards on seven carries. Quintae Bradshaw fought through a shoulder injury for 36 yards on 11 totes.

In a mistake-filled game, Southern Wayne was tagged for 160 yards of penalties on 16 flags. Cleveland finished with 70 yards of penalties on eight infractions.

Southern Wayne (4-2 overall, 0-2 ECC) travels to Eastern Wayne on Friday night.