West Point uses ground game, pounds CC on Senior Night
With nothing to lose, Charles City looked to close out the football season with a win during a Nov. 3 contest against visiting West Point on Senior Night. However, injuries and mental mistakes plagued the Panthers once again.
West Point rushed for 525 yards in the contest as the hosts had no answer for the Pointers in a 64-18 drubbing to end the Panthers season at 3-7.
Charles City’s mistakes struck early. An errant snap on a punt attempt rolled into the end zone where the hosts pounced on it, resulting in a safety and two points for West Point. After the free kick, West Point’s Lopear Burrell scored on a 20-yard tote to up the advantage to 10-0. Shortly before the end of the first quarter, Lawrence Porter trotted 37 yards as the guests took a 16-0 lead into the next frame.
Charles City cracked the scoreboard thanks to a defensive effort. Pointer running back Jared Lawson was stripped of the ball and the Panthers’ Craig Jones recovered it. Jones returned the ball 25 yards to the end zone to cut the West Point advantage to 10 (16-6).
But the very next play saw big back Porter show off his speedy side. Porter took a handoff from the trap formation and galloped down the West Point sideline for 83 yards and another score. Four minutes later, Lawson made amends for his fumble and ran 33 yards for another score. Charles City chipped into the Pointer lead thanks to a Robert Dobson 47-yard run, but Porter added his third score of the night with less than a minute remaining as West Point took a 37-12 advantage into the halftime break.
The visitors emerged from the halftime break in full control of the contest. Lawson added runs of 12 and 28, respectively, for touchdown scores. Pointer teammate Tyler Clair added a score at the beginning of the fourth quarter with a seven-yard run that pushed the Pointer lead to 57-12. Charles City’s Dobson accounted for the Panthers last score of the season with a touchdown run after West Point turned the ball over. But Lawson scored from 40 yards out, adding his fourth touchdown on the ground and closing out the game.
Panther head coach Steward Greene commented on the game and reflected on the season as well.
“Tonight was a microcosm of what we have done all year,” he said. “We have talent but tonight, we lacked in execution.”
Greene, however, thanked his six seniors who contributed to the program.
“These guys gave it their all on the field,” the head coach continued. “They never put their heads down and they fought through the highs and lows of the year and I thank them for that.”
However, the head coach had one more announcement to make. Greene said that this game would be his last as a high school football coach.
“I have given 18 years to a program that I was part of the pioneering group back in 1969,” Greene said, referencing his tenure spent as a coach for Charles City football since 1999 and being part of the first football team at the school. “I have had great players and teams over those years and I am grateful to have the opportunity to witness that.
“Now, it’s time for someone else to take the reigns,” Greene continued. “There is a strong core of players returning and I can see them doing great things to continue to move this program in the right direction.”
CC- C. Jones 0/2/0 yards, Bowman 0/2/0 yards.
WP- J. Lawson 1/1/14 yards, Burrell 1/4/4 yards.
WP- Clair 1/14, McCray 1/4.
CC- C. Jones 18/99, Dobson 16/95, 2 TD; Adkins 2/2, Englehart 1/-2, Bowman 2/-3, M. Jones 1/-4.
WP- J. Lawson 12/196, 4 TD; Porter 8/175, 3 TD; N. Lawson 7/90, Burrell 4/44, 1 TD; Shaw 1/27, Clair 2/11, 1 TD; Ware 1/1; Walsh 1/-19.