Thursday, November 10, 2011
H.W. Byers wins; trip to Shaw next
By BARRY BURLESON
The H.W. Byers Lions had a choice to make after an 0-3 start.
“They could either fall apart or come closer together,” coach James Kimbrough said. “They chose to come together and play good football.”
They proceeded to win six out of their final eight games, good enough to put them in the state playoffs in just their first season of district competition. The latest victory was a 54-6 blowout of Biggersville Friday night at home.
“These players stuck with it through adversity,” Kimbrough said. “When we were losing, there was a lot of negativity, but they were able to bounce back from that negativity.”
The Lions, 6-5 overall and fourth seed from Region 1-1A with a 5-3 mark, will travel to Shaw Friday to begin post-season competition. Shaw finished 9-2 in the regular season, 8-0 to win Region 2-1A.
“They’re extremely fast – a lot of good athletes,” Kimbrough said. “Usually people are worried about our speed. Against Shaw, we have to be worried about theirs.”
H.W. Byers tuned up for the trip to the Delta by beating Biggersville by 48 points.
Marquis Moore was the workhorse. He carried 11 times for 246 yards, all in the first half.
The Lions leaped in front 16-0 after one quarter. Dominic Jones scored on a 15-yard run and later Moore sprinted 67 yards for six. Jones also cashed in both two-point conversions.
It was 30-0 at the half. Jones had an 8-yard touchdown run, followed by an unsuccessful two-point try. Then Moore got loose again, this time for 65 yards and six. Quantario Stigger carried for the two.
Biggersville got on the scoreboard early in the third on a 27-yard pass play.
But the Lions answered with two touchdowns of their own in the third. Stigger scored on a 13-yard run and also carried for the conversion. Then Jones rushed for his third touchdown of the night, this one from 12 yards out, and also added the two.
Byers was up 46-6 following three periods.
In the fourth, quarterback Anthony Rubin kept the ball for a 10-yard score. Jones ran for the two-point conversion.
Coach Kimbrough was proud of the way his team bounced back from a disappointing 27-0 loss at Falkner the week before.
“We matched up better with Biggersville up front, and we played a lot better,” he said.
“We could not get anything going against Falkner, but we practiced hard and bounced back.
“That’s the thing that has impressed me most about this group. They can bounce back from a loss.”
Byers just began its football program in 2008 and had played as an independent up until this year.
“It’s remarkable how fast we’ve gotten here,” Coach Kimbrough said. “Generally, it takes five or six years to get competitive.
“We’re out-numbered and out-manned, but we do have talent. These kids believe, and they came together during the season.
“It was our goal to get to the playoffs in this first year that we had the opportunity. Now we have a great challenge ahead of us (at Shaw).”
Kickoff Friday is 7 p.m.
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