Hawks survive late game surge from Flashes
by Donell Maxie
Oct 22, 2013 | 1104 views | 0 0 comments | 21 21 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Octavius Stimmage beats a St. Aloysius defender to catches a touchdown pass from Andre Pruitt Friday in Shaw's 28-26 win over the Flashes.
Octavius Stimmage beats a St. Aloysius defender to catches a touchdown pass from Andre Pruitt Friday in Shaw's 28-26 win over the Flashes.
slideshow
Nothing has come easy for the Shaw Hawks football team this season and Friday night was another example of just how trying this season has been for the Hawks.

The St. Aloysius flashes took their best swings, but could not break down Shaw's will as the Hawks' defense made a defensive stand and stopped the Flashes from tying the game with under 30-seconds remaining in the contest.

When the seconds finally ticked off the clock, the Hawks stood tall for their homecoming and walked away with a 28-26 victory.

Shaw improved to 4-4 overall with a 3-2 mark in the Region 2-1A. St. Aloysius fell to 5-4 with a 4-2 mark in the region.

With the game hanging in the balance and the Hawks with possession clinging to a 28-20 lead, the Flashes knew they needed to make a play. They did just that on third and long as Matthew Foley sacked Hawks' quarterback Pruitt.

On fourth and long the Hawks punted the ball away down to the Flashes nine-yard line.

In order to have a shot at the win the Flashes needed to drive the ball 91 yards and then get the two-point conversion to tie the game up.

St. Aloysius managed to give themselves a chance when a tip pass from Connor Smith was knocked down by a Shaw defender, but the ball ricochet off a Flashes receiver's shoulder pads and landed in the hands of Foley who ran the ball 82-yards to the Hawks' nine-yard line where he was chased down and tackled by Lekia McRoy.

On third and goal from the four-yard line, Smith scrambled left and then back right and found Brandon Teller in the back of the end zone for the four yard touchdown pass with 27-seconds left in the game.

Needing two points to tie the contest, St. Aloysius tried for two, but Shaw's Xavius Loggins made the play of the night as he leaped to snatch the intended pass and end the Flashes chances at comeback.

"The defense stepped up when it mattered most and I'm proud of them for that, but we have to get better," said Kendrick Smith, Hawks head coach.

Smith added that offensively the team has to fix what ever is wrong with them.

"We have to get better at our scheme. We have to get better at the thing that we have always been good at and that's being a great option football team."

Shaw's opening drive ended disastrously as Andre Pruitt was picked off by DeMichael Harris.

The Flashes could not get anything going and elected to try a 47-yard field goal, but Blake Hudson missed it.

Shaw was able to get on the board first as Pruitt connected with Malik Walker on a 22-yard touchdown pass with 11:40 on the second quarter clock. Jermarquis Stimmage added the point after for a 7-0 Shaw lead.

St. Aloysius tied the game at 7-7 with 3:31 remaining in the second quarter as the Flashes scored off a three-yard run from Josh Price and Hudson added the point after.

The Hawks responded and put together a six play, 54-yard drive that ended with Pruitt connecting with Walker again on a 26-yard touchdown pass with 1:16 remaining. Jermarquis added the point after for a 14-7 game and that would be the halftime score.

The Flashes opened the third quarter with a solid drive that saw Hudson connect on a 24-yard field goal with 8:07 on the third quarter clock for a 14-10 score.

The Hawks came right back and Loggins broke free on a 59-yard touchdown scamper with 6:54 left in the third. The point after from Jermarquis was good to give Shaw a 21-10 advantage.

A St. Aloysius fumble, recovered by Shaw gave the Hawks the ball and they made the Flashes pay as Pruitt found Octavius Stimmage for a five-yard touchdown pass with 56-seconds left in the third. Jermarquis added the point after for a 28-10 game.

The Flashes scored in the fourth with 9:15 on the clock as Douglas Busari scored from three yards out. The kick from Hudson was good for a 28-17 game.

The Flashes managed to block Shaw's punt to get the ball back in favorable territory. Shaw's defense stood tall and forced the Flashes to attempt a 37-yard field goal, which Hudson made for a 28-20 game with 6:06 remaining in the game.

Pruitt led the Hawks offense, completing 9-of-15 passes for 165 yards with three touchdowns and one interception. Pruitt also rushed for 54 yards on 13 carries. Loggins had 60 yards on three carries with a touchdown, Justin King had 58 yards on 11 carries and McRoy added 46 yards on four carries. Malik Walker led all receivers with three catches for 63 yards and two touchdowns, Octavius had three catches for 48 yards and one touchdown and Keveon Shepherd finished two catches for 47 yards.

The Hawks defense was led by Lerandel Allen with 13 tackles and a sack, Loggins had 10 tackles, Jermarquis, King and Jasprell Dillard added nine tackles each, Ricky Lunford had seven tackles with a fumble recovery, Jerris Westmoreland added six tackles with a sack and McRoy added a sack.

Shaw will be back in action at 7 p.m. Friday in Kilmichael against Montgomery County.