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Yellow Jackets fail to stop potent Eagles offense

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GREENWOOD, S.C. --- Coming out of the timeout, D.J. Dunlap was told to simply follow his fullback.

The Greenwood quarterback found some room, raced downfield and nearly doubled his rushing total on one play to help the Eagles eliminate North Augusta, 34-21, on Friday night in the Class AAAA Division II semifinals.

The 62-yard run on third down with a little more than three minutes to go meant Dan Pippin's squad got the ball back down two scores.

"That was the difference -- I was confident in our offense," Pippin said, believing his offense could score if the defense made the stop.

Dunlap was one of four Eagles to run for more than 50 yards as the Eagles compiled 344 yards on the ground. Greenwood entered the contest with four different players rushing for at least 500 yards.

North Augusta (12-2) got to the Eagles' side of the field on its final possession but was stopped on fourth down with 1:11 left on the clock.

Earlier, the Yellow Jackets rallied to tie the game as both teams suffered from special teams blunders in the third quarter.

Greenwood (13-1) fumbled the opening kick of the second half, and North Augusta took advantage when Loranzo Hammonds found Montez McGuire to tie the game at 14.

"We just tried to go out and give it all we got," McGuire said.

McGuire had 102 receiving yards and was key in the first half, when he twice jumped up along with a defender to make two 32-yard receptions to put the ball down at the 4 each time. The first came on the Yellow Jackets' opening drive while the second came with 3.8 seconds left in the second quarter. But North Augusta came up empty when Hammonds' pass fell a little low and incomplete in the end zone to make it 14-7 Eagles at halftime.

In the third, the Yellow Jackets turned the ball over on a fourth-down play when punter Vinny Miller was swarmed by Greenwood defenders to give the Eagles the ball deep in North Augusta territory.

Kevon Harrison ran it in from the 1 to give the No. 2 seed the lead before DeMarcus Rouse responded with a 75-yard touchdown reception on a play Hammonds extended as he used his legs to get away from pressure.

However, Greenwood answered with a long drive of its own and then got the long Dunlap run.

North Augusta, the No. 3 seed, also lost backup quarterback/wide receiver Tyrell Hillary to an injury midway through the second quarter when he was taken off on a stretcher. Hillary left the field with a "No. 1" signal from his right index finger and Pippin said after the game it looked like a lower-leg injury.

Greenwood now goes for its fourth state title since 1999 at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia next Friday.

"We got one more stop to accomplish our goal," Dunlap said.

Greenwood 34, North Augusta 21

PLAY OF THE GAME: Faced with a third down, Greenwood's D.J. Dunlap kept the ball and raced to the end zone for a 62-yard touchdown that put the Eagles up 13.

STAR OF THE GAME: Dunlap rushed for more than 100 yards and also connected with receiver Carson Simpson on third downs throughout the evening.

WHY GREENWOOD WON: The Eagles' offense dominated when it didn't turn the ball over.

WHY NORTH AUGUSTA LOST: Despite moving the ball well offensively, the Yellow Jackets couldn't make the stops late.

NEXT: Greenwood vs. Northwestern in the final at 8 p.m. Friday at Williams-Brice Stadium.

Greenwood 34, North Augusta 21

North Augusta 7 0 14 0 - 21
Greenwood 7 7 7 13 - 34

First Quarter
NA-Loranzo Hammonds 2 run (Mitch Redd kick), 8:17
G-Ran Ethridge 18 run (Matt McManis kick), 5:04

Second Quarter
G-D.J. Goodman 13 run (McManis kick), 9:14

Third Quarter
NA-Montez McGuire 14 pass from Hammonds (Redd kick), 11:12
G-Kevon Harrison 1 run (McManis kick), 2:42
NA-DeMarcus Rouse 75 pass from Hammonds (Redd kick), 1:54

Fourth Quarter
G-D.J. Dunlap 2 run (McManis kick), 7:44
G-Dunlap 62 run (bad snap - no kick), 3:07

NAG
First Downs1522
Rushes-Yards29-4855-344
Passing Yards26344
Comp.-Att.-Int.16-27-04-7-0
Fumbles-Lost4-03-2
Punts-Yards3-45.71-46
Penalties-Yards2-256-57

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS

RUSHING- NA: DeMarcus Rouse 13-72, Loranzo Hammonds 15-(-5), Vinny Miller 1-(-19); G: D.J. Dunlap 18-125, D.J. Goodman 11-88, Kevon Harrison 16-78, Ran Ethridge 10-53

PASSING- NA: Hammonds 15-27-0 263; G: Dunlap 4-7-0 44.

RECEIVING- NA: Montez McGuire 7-102, DeMarcus Rouse 1-75, Jessie Pernell 3-34, Jordan Grantham 3-22, DeVontez Rouse 2-30; G: Carson Simpson 4-44.

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etlinks
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etlinks 11/27/10 - 08:20 am
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You had a great season NA

You had a great season NA keep your heads held high.

gibzgirl
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gibzgirl 11/27/10 - 01:24 pm
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Thank you for an AWESOME

Thank you for an AWESOME season this year NA!!! Very proud of the great job you all did and can't wait for a shot again next year!! :) Nothing to be ashamed of, you guys did a great job!!!!

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