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INDEPENDENCE –– It took 23 hours to get Grayson County’s nondistrict game with Chilhowie started. It took two minutes and 14 seconds to finish it off.
In a game postponed from Friday night due to weather, Grayson scored two touchdowns in the final 2:01 of the first half and another one 13 seconds into the third quarter, steamrolling the Warriors 40-7 Saturday night at Bill Strong Field.
Two teams that had combined for 90 points in separate wins a week earlier were mired in a 7-7 tie late in the second quarter when the Blue Devils (2-0) finished off a 12-play, 56-yard drive with Xavier Rodriguez’s 6-yard scoring run.
Mario Ruiz’s PAT made it 14-7 with 2:01 left before the half, which was just enough time to add to the lead.
Two plays after the ensuing kickoff, a Jacob Parnell interception and return put the Devils back in business at the Grayson 36 with 1:40 to work with. The Blue Devils capitalized on the final play of the half when Mikey Rodgers went up amid double coverage and yanked down a 25-yard scoring toss from Max Rodgers. The failed PAT sent Grayson into the half holding a 20-7 lead.
The situation only deteriorated for Chilhowie (1-1) as the second half got under way. Brett Johnson picked up a squibbed kickoff at his 20, backtracked and coughed up the ball at the 9. Rodriguez scored from there on the next play and Max Rodgers fired to Darren Anderson for the two-point conversion and a 28-7 lead with 11:47 showing in the third period.
A brief but heavy downpour helped turn the second half into a series of turnovers, but the Blue Devils had a couple more highlight-reel plays left in them nonetheless. Max Rodgers kept on a bootleg to the left, slipped a tackle in the backfield and raced 49 yards for a touchdown and a 34-7 lead at 4:34 of the third.
Chilhowie and Grayson combined to turn the ball over on the next seven possessions, including Lucas Rudy’s interception and return to the Grayson 43 midway through the fourth quarter. Rodriguez scored his fourth TD of the night on the next play, an electrifying 57-yard run. Breaking free off of left tackle, Rodriguez was hemmed in near the sideline at the 20 before hitting the brakes and sidestepping three Chilhowie defenders, cutting back inside and outrunning two more Warriors the final 15 yards for the score.
Chilhowie had the first big play of the night, taking a 7-0 lead when Johnson went up the middle and sprinted 81 yards for a score at 10:22 of the second quarter.
The Blue Devils answered on their next possession when Rodriguez took a toss to his left, got to the edge and outran the Warrior defense on a 34-yard TD scamper. Rodriguez and Anderson both topped 100 yards for Grayson, which rushed for 361 of its 445 yards of total offense. Rodriguez carried 21 times for 158 yards and Anderson added 111 yards on seven tries.
Aaron Conley (105 yards) and Johnson (103) led the Warriors, who committed eight turnovers.
Chilhowie................0 7 0 0–– 7
Grayson County......0 20 14 6––40
C–Johnson 81 run (Farris kick) 10:22
GC–Rodriguez 34 run (Ruiz kick) 8:12
GC–Rodriguez 4 run (Ruiz kick) 2:01
GC–Mk.Rodgers 25 pass from Mx.Rodgers (kick failed) 0:00
GC–Rodriguez 9 run (Anderson pass from Mx.Rodgers) 11:47
GC–Mx.Rodgers 49 run (kick failed) 4:34
GC–Rodriguez 57 run (kick failed) 4:57
First downs 14 16
Rushes-yards 36-188 41-361
Yards passing 112 84
Comp-Att-Int 10-27-4 7-13-1
Return yards 44 140
Punts-average 3-28.3 2-39.0
Fumbles-lost 8-4 4-4
Penalties-yards 3-25 6-45
RUSHING—Chilhowie, Conley 12-105, Johnson 15-103, Gillespie 2-3, Jones 1-2, Thomas 3-(-11), Pierce 2-(-16), team 1-2. Grayson County, Rodriguez 21-158, Anderson 7-111, Mx.Rodgers 8-66, J.Bilbrey 5-26.
PASSING–Chilhowie, Pierce 6-21-3-70, Thomas 4-6-1-42. Grayson County, Mx.Rodgers 7-13-1-84.
RECEIVING–Sturgill 4-38, Conley 3-37, Johnson 3-37. Grayson County, Mk.Rodgers 6-68, Anderson 1-16.