Archive for November 3rd, 2011

HEARTWRENCHNG END TO BLUE JAYS SEASON

A Charleston team worthy of praise for their perseverance, dedication and performance; dropped a heartbreaking 16-13 Class 2 Regional loss at Crystal City Wednesday night.

A senior class that battled thru a 2-28 first three years, turned it around this year with a 5-6 finish on the scoreboard, but a lasting impact on the sustained football success the Blue Jays could be in for…

Cody Hailey, Maurice Moore; Krushon Scott; Jamaul Gray; Michael Baugh never gave up on Blue Jay football and don’t look now, but the backfield is loaded again; a strong defensive core is in place; and the success on the field can only help the recruiting efforts of the intense and well liked and respected second year coach Brett Blackman.

More on that later; to the game….

The critical sector of the game centered around a second Hornet Td and conversion that put the Jays in a position of needing two scores in the remaining seven minutes of the contest.

Crystal City bolted to the crucial two-score lead on the strength of a Stacey Thornton 56-yard romp and subsequent conversion with 7:27 to play and a 16-7 score.

Charleston responded. Two plays later. A Michael Hull – who had a career passing night with an unofficial 7-9 101 yards performance – 11-yard pass to Moore, set up a swing pass to Gray that resulted in a 47-yard catch and run and a 16-13 score with 6:57 left in regulation.

The conversion pass attempt came up just short leaving the Jays needing a FG to tie.

Crystal City was about to be forced to punt but a late penalty flag on the Jays on a third and 11 play resulted in a Hornet first down with 5:21 to play.

Again, Charleston responded. Three plays later the Hornets were forced to punt with he ball going in the end zone for a touchback setting the Jays up with 80-yards for the winning score at their own 20-yard line with just under 4 minutes to play.

Seven plays later the Jays were first and goal at the Hornets nine-yard line with just under two minutes to play.

On first down, the Hornets snuffed freshman Rontavious Clark – a stalwart for the Jays all season – making it second and goal from 12; Charleston called its second time out; according to the superb broadcast of Brink Naile and Josh Thompson, the Hornets had been putting extra defenders in the box all night so the Jays made a smart call on the next play with the receiver just missing connections in the end zone setting up third and goal.

Then, Hull rolled, under pressure but still got off the pass to an open receiver in the end zone that just missed connections setting up fourth and goal – and the season on the line.

Calling their final time out; the Blue Jays decided a game-tying 29-yard field goal attempt that Crystal City broke through and blocked; thus ending the season on a heartbreak for the Jays.

Charleston took the initial lead on a 10-play game opening drive with a one-yard plunger from the senior Gray. Fellow senior Scott booted the PAT for a 7-0 lead midway thru the first period. Moore carried six of the plays and Clark had a 29-yard burst in the drive.

The teams then alternated interceptions with Deontrail Winston snagging one for the Blue Jays that would be returned by the Hornets on the next possession.

Charleston defense – as they would all nite – and have for the large part the entire season – stiffened keeping the hornet out of the end zone after a 10-play CC drive threatened a late first quarter score.

Crystal City would take the lead – as it turned out for good – on a 32-blast by and a critically – as it turns out – two point conversion an 8-7 lead at the 9:53 mark of the second quarter.

It would stay that way thru intermission as the Jays were unable to capitalize on a 20-yard drive that stalled on a fourth and goal with a minute to play before intermission.

SEASON ENDING reviews of the Charleston and East Prairie football programs are forthcoming later this week…

HAT’s OFF the Charleston football program/students/fans/faculty/players and coaches for a job well done…

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