Strawberry Crest reached notched their third win of the year on Friday, marking their highest total in a season since 2013.
Strawberry Crest moved to 3-4 on Friday night with a 27-0 win over the Brandon Eagles.
With their third win of the season in hand, the Chargers have now notched their highest single-season win total since finishing 7-5 in 2013 — Strawberry Crest’s best season in school history.
“It feels great,” head coach Phillip Prior said about the win. “I’m so proud of these kids. It’s these kids, it’s our coaching staff, I’m proud of them and the work that they’ve put in. It started back in the spring, we carried it out through the summer and we’re not done yet. Our goal, number one, was to get to two wins, after two we get to three and now we’re going to add on to that total. That’s the goal.”
The Chargers fielded the opening kick and worked their way down the field on a long, methodical drive to start the game. From just outside of the Brandon 20-yard line, quarterback Coby Burger escaped the pocket for a first down inside of the five and running back Ryan Weems Strawberry Crest on the board early, giving them a 6-0 lead with 6:36 remaining in the first quarter on the short touchdown run up the middle.
Brandon moved only backward on their first drive, allowing the Chargers to take over near midfield for their second possession.
On another long drive, moving largely on the back of senior running back Miles Jones, Strawberry Crest hit paydirt again. After once again working their way inside the Brandon five-yard line, it was Jones who found his way into the endzone and onto the score sheet. On the ensuing extra point attempt, lined up as the holder, Weems received the snap and took off for the right sideline, battling through contact just enough to reach the goal line and move the Chargers’ lead to 14-0 on a successful two-point conversion.
Following another short drive from Brandon, Strawberry Crest once again opened their drive near midfield at their own 40-yard line. The first two scoring drives by the Chargers had seen them move down the field by way of several short runs, but they wasted no time adding to the lead on their third drive. On the third play of the series, Burger broke free on a quarterback keeper and flew down the field for a long touchdown run. With little time remaining in the half, Strawberry Crest had built a 20-0 advantage.
Burger completed just two passes on four attempts for 12 passing yards, but paced the team’s 241-yard rushing attack with 82 yards and the long touchdown on nine carries.
In the second half, Strawberry Crest’s defense remained stout, completing the shutout of Brandon and largely keeping the Eagles away from even opportunities to put points on the board.
The Chargers would add one more touchdown in the second half, a 30-yard touchdown run down the right sideline from Weems, capping the milestone victory.
Behind Burger, the running back trio of Jones, Weems and sophomore Devin Blunt evenly handled the lion’s share of the remaining carries. Jones finished the contest with 64 yards and a touchdown on eight attempts, Weems totaled 46 yards and two touchdowns on five attempts and Blunt added 42 yards on seven attempts.
“I thought we played a really good first half,” Prior said. “I thought that the first half was the best football that we’ve played so far. We left some things out there in the second half. I told the guys, hey, if we want to be a great team and take that next step, those are some things that we can’t let happen, allowing an opportunity for teams to let teams back in the game or whatever it may be.”