CRESCENT CITY - Despite similar records, the Keystone Heights High Indians and Crescent City High Raiders football teams entered Friday’s game under much different circumstances. Each team came in …
CRESCENT CITY - Despite similar records, the Keystone Heights High Indians and Crescent City High Raiders football teams entered Friday’s game under much different circumstances. Each team came in with one win, but Keystone Heights was playing their second game this week following a 38-0 loss to Bradford in a game pushed to Monday due to Hurricane Ian. Crescent City on the other hand last played 14 days ago as a result of the storm.
Last week’s game against Pierson Taylor was pushed to Monday but could not be played because Volusia schools had not reopened. That game will now be played Mon., Oct. 10.
In the end, Crescent City came away with a 38-18 win Friday night at Crescent City High School.
To add to the scary scenario pre-Halloween, Keystone Heights faces undefeated Palatka at home this Friday. Keystone Heights High coach Chuck Dickinson, now 1-5 after a wholesale graduation of last year’s 10-2 region final team, when asked what his team needs to do to be ready for the Panthers, “We’ve got to keep working, and keep getting better and believe in each other and do it.”
The Raiders defense forced a three and out on Keystone Heights’ first possession. After a short punt and a Crescent City penalty, Crescent City quarterback Eric Jenkins found wide receiver Sheldon Patrick for a 41-yard touchdown pass to give the Raiders a 7-0 lead.
The Indians immediately went to work on the ground with an 11 play 80-yard drive that took up six minutes and 52 seconds ending with a Darrion Grady 2-yard touchdown run to make it a 7-6 game at the end of the 1st quarter.
Indians Coach Charles Dickinson remarked “Good drive. [We drove] right down the middle of the field.”
Grady, a junior, finished the half with 66 yards on 16 carries as Keystone Heights outrushed Crescent City for the contest 162-141. Crescent City passed for 179 yards to Keystone Heights’ 54 yards via air.
The Raiders added 17 more points in the second quarter starting with a 51-yard touchdown run by Ray Davis to extend the Raider lead to 14-6 with 9:46 in the period.
After another Indian three and out the Raiders put together a nine play 42-yard drive ending with a David Newbold 30-yard field goal to make it 17-6.
The Indians again went three downs and out but a Sam Ulsch interception for Keystone Heights got them the ball back at their own 4-yard line where a Jayden Goodman punt bounced off his own teammate into the waiting hands of Raider Lentavious Keenan in the end zone, putting Crescent City up 24-6 at the half.
Asked about the second quarter Dickinson lamented, “We just struggled.”
After a Crescent City three and out to start the third, a promising Indian drive ended in a Ray Davis interception.
“He was exceptional tonight.” Raiders Coach Sean Delaney said of his two-way star.
Three plays later Davis grabbed Jenkins’ second scoring pass of the night from eight yards out and the Raiders were up 31-6.
A 60-yard return on the ensuing kick by Vernell Jackson gave the Indians a short field. Six straight carries from Bryar Schenck carried Keystone Heights the last 37 yards into the end zone to cut the lead to 31-12 late in the 3rd.
“He gave great effort tonight running the ball,” Dickinson said.
Schenck had 79 of his 99 rushing yards in the 2nd half.
The Raider offense took the game into the fourth quarter before turning it over on downs. Once again, their defense forced a three and out.
After a short punt, a holding penalty left Crescent City facing third and 23 from their own 22. Jenkins completed a 25-yard pass to Davis to keep the Raiders on the field. Two plays later Jenkins found Brandon Padgett for a 52-yard bomb, setting up a 1 yard run by Jenkins for his third and final score of the night extending the Raider lead to 38-12. Schenck, who ran for 79 yards in the second half caught a 32-yard pass from Parmeter Jackson for the final Keystone Heightsscore of the night. The Raiders ran out the final two minutes and the Indians were defeated for the third straight game.
Crescent City will play two district games at home, Pierson Taylor on Monday, Port Orange Atlantic on Friday. Keystone Heights hosts unbeaten Palatka.
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