Evans overcomes slow start to beat Richmond Academy

Evans 26, Richmond Academy 7



Evans coach Marty Jackson felt better after a late score in the first half, but two big runs by Stephon Jacobs did even more.

The Knights, struggling for most of the first half, rebounded by putting up 26 unanswered points to beat Richmond Academy 26-7 on Friday night.

“The score at the end of the half was big, but we had to establish the run a little bit,” Jackson said. “We wanted to run more.”

After a defensive stop set up a short field and touchdown late in the second quarter, Jacobs burst free for 19- and 46-yard runs on the Knights’ first two plays of the second half.

Before breaking through late in the second quarter, Evans had just 15 yards of offense. But on the two scoring drives, the Knights racked up 92 yards in a total of six plays, scoring 13 points.

Evans (1-0) later added two more touchdowns, both coming thanks to special teams.

On one play, Evans blocked a punt by Richmond Academy’s Gardner Duckworth and Jonquell Jones picked up the ball, almost taking it back for the score. Ronnie Graham finished the job with a 1-yard touchdown run.

The sudden surge came after Evans was stuck in reverse early. During one stretch, the Knights lost yards on seven of eight plays.

Evans quarterback Matlin Marshall was hit-or-miss at the start, gaining 19 yards on one scramble but then losing all those yards on the next play when he held onto the ball too long.

However, the junior made up for an interception in Richmond Academy territory by leading at 27-yard drive to make it 7-7 at the half.

The Musketeers (0-1) scored their only points on a 47-yard touchdown run by Travis Beatty. He led all rushers with 126 yards.

But the big running plays and the strong Evans special teams were too much.

“We got to get better,” Musketeers coach Chris Hughes said. “We had a lot of special teams mistakes, and that’s not us.”



Evans leads the series 18-2-1 after Friday’s win. During the series, the Knights have averaged 23.3 points per game while holding the Musketeers to 12 a game, including three shutouts. A look at the past five games in the series.



Aug. 30, 2012 Richmond Academy Knights 21-12

Aug. 26, 2011 Evans Knights 33-19

Aug. 27, 2010 Richmond Academy Knights 9-5

Nov. 6, 2009 Richmond Academy Musketeers 21-15

Nov. 7, 2008 Evans Knights 27-10


Source: www.ghsfha.org


PLAY OF THE GAME: Evans got enough pressure on the Musketeers’ punter to get a block, with Jonquell Jones almost taking in the blocked ball in for a touchdown.

STAR OF THE GAME: The Knights’ Stephon Jacobs got the offense going by rushing for 65 total yards and a touchdown on his first two attempts of the third quarter.

WHY EVANS WON: The special teams made big plays and the running game got stronger in the second half.

WHY RICHMOND ACADEMY LOST: The special teams struggled.

NEXT: Richmond Academy at Statesboro, 7:30 p.m. Friday; Evans at Elbert County, 7:30 p.m. Sept. 13.



R. Academy 0 7 0 0 – 7
Evans 0 7 12 7 – 26

Second Quarter
ARC-Travis Beatty 47 run (Gardner Duckworth kick), 9:42
E-Joacinto Grimes 2 pass from Matlin Marshall (Matt Davidson kick), 0:15

Third Quarter
E-Stephon Jacobs 46 run (kick missed), 11:24
E-Marshall 3 run (run failed), 0:39

Fourth Quarter
E-Ronnie Graham 1 run (Davidson kick), 9:48

First Downs1210
Passing Yards6634

RUSHING–ARC: Travis Beatty 16-126, Tony Daggett 11-58, Zac Mitchell 5-16, Devon Corbo 4-3, Quentarious Ellis 1-1, Xavier Jenkins 1-0, Asante Lloyd 1-(-5), Jeff Jones 2-(-8), Gardner Duckworth 1-(-21). Evans: Stephon
Jacobs 4-47, Joacinto Grimes 4-41, Matlin Marshall 12-24, Ronnie Graham 9-15, Tyler Spence 2-11, Robert Clay 5-6, Noah Knight 1-(-2).

PASSING–ARC: Daggett 3-11-0 45, Jones 3-11-1 21; Evans: Marshall 5-15-1 34.

RECEIVING–ARC: Corbo 3-37, Christian Barnes 1-10, Quez Flournoy 1-10, Beatty 1-9; Evans: K’lon Lovett 1-16, Graham 1-11. Grimes 3-7.