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Gamecocks take care of business 42-0 over Josey

Though it was not always pretty, the undefeated Screven County High School Gamecocks of Ron Duncan took care of business and defeated the Thomas Walter Josey Eagles 42-0 during the evening of Oct. 20. 

Played at Kelly Memorial Stadium, the game was the annual Homecoming contest for the Roosters (7-0, 5-0), now winners of 12 consecutive Homecoming games, who now travel once again to Augusta, this time to face the Glenn Hills Spartans (5-3, 3-2) Friday night.

It was another banner night for the Dirty Bird defense as they dominated to the tune of their fifth consecutive shutout. Only the 1988 Gamecocks have achieved that feat.

Josey was limited to 46 total yards on 12 rushing plays and four completed passes.

Josey’s deepest penetration was the SCHS 37-yard line on their third possession of the game. It was a possession that saw the Eagles pick up three of their four first downs.

“The most important aspect of it is to win the game” said Duncan, “but the shutouts have been nice for the defensive players that have contributed. We have been able to play a lot of guys in all of the games up until Friday night. We decided to go as long as we could with a lot of our starters Friday in order to prepare them for what is ahead.”

Only that 1988 SCHS defense allowed fewer points through seven games with 28 than the 33 of the current rendition of Dirty Bird performers. Also for the defense Friday’s win was the ninth consecutive over the Eagles dating back to 1983. The game also marked the third in a row that saw SCHS shut out Josey.

On the other side of the ball, there were just seven possessions on the night, “I thought we did a good job of finishing our drives Friday,” said Duncan. “I think all but one ended with a TD.” 

Indeed the Roosters finished with six scores on seven possessions.

Balance was the name of the offensive game Friday with 258 rushing yards to go with 201 passing yards on those seven possessions.

“As far as the balance goes, sometimes it just works out that way,” said Duncan. “We averaged over seven yards a carry, but we were able to find some things in the passing game also.”  

Unlike the Westside game, which featured amazingly short drives, Josey’s scrappy defense made the Red and White work a little harder with scoring drives of 40 yards in seven plays; 87 yards in eight plays; 63 yards in eight plays; 65 yards in nine plays; 80 yards in eight plays; and 57 yards in four plays. 

Seven scoring drives against Westside totaled just 21 plays.

Chalked up in the negative category for the Gamecocks was another night of seemingly endless penalties. 

For the night. there were 12 for 130 yards in losses. For the season there have been 68 penalties (9.7 per game) for 604 total yards (86 yards per game). Most disconcerting about the 12 Friday was that four of them were of the unsportsmanlike conduct variety.

Said Duncan of the obvious problem: “I can handle aggressive penalties to a degree, but the unsportsmanlike penalties are a sign of a selfish player. I have never understood those, I mean you are doing something that makes you feel better for only a split second but kills your team. We need to do a better job of shutting our mouths and playing the game.” 

Defensive numbers for the shutout Friday were tempered by the fact that Josey had 12 running plays, four completed passes, and seven kickoff returns.

Not a lot of chances for tackles.

Leading the were Gary Hawkins who was in on seven; Determine Cooper and Nick Garvin who were in on five each; and EJ Roberson and Kendrick Cox, who were in on four each.

CJ Wright had the lone sack.

On the offensive side of the ball, rushing-wise there was Kim Hunter (11-83); Roberson (7-65); Wright (8-61); Armani Bunbury (8-37); and Algerlon Pettigrew (2-12). 

Bunbury was 10-16 passing for 201 yards and a score. Leading receivers were Johnathan Roberts (2-16); Ja’lon Tyler (2-15); and Tyquan Johnson (2-14). 

A total of seven different receivers caught passes.  

Scoring for SCHS, in order, were Bunbury twice; Eli Brodnex on a pass from Bunbury; Wright; Roberson; and Pettigrew. 

Michael Johnston extended his consecutive PAT streak to 32, each successful kick a new record. Bunbury passed assistant football coach Terry Markovcic and Dr. Don Aaron Jr., the team physician, for career pass completions. Bunbury now has 173 surpassing the duo’s 163.