Phan­toms keep firm hold of lead

Daily Press (Sunday) - - Sports - By Jim McGrath Cor­re­spon­dent

HAMPTON – Phoebus so­lid­i­fied its op­por­tu­nity to cap­ture the Penin­sula Dis­trict ti­tle with a con­vinc­ing 37-14 win over Ke­cough­tan on Satur­day evening.

Af­ter a fight on the side­line that in­volved at least a dozen play­ers, the game was called with 2:49 re­main­ing.

With the win, Phoebus (7-1, 7-0 Penin­sula Dis­trict) main­tained its one-game lead over Wood­side while Ke­cough­tan (6-3, 6-2 PD) hin­dered its chances for a home 5A play­off game. The Phan­toms will com­plete a game with Her­itage on Tues­day. They will be trail­ing 6-0 when the sec­ond quar­ter re­sumes.

The Phan­toms en­joyed fa­vor­able field po­si­tion on their open­ing drive as the War­riors were forced to punt from their end zone, but could only muster 18 yards on the kick, giv­ing the hosts the ball at the Ke­cough­tan 20.

Two Jaylen White runs ad­vanced the ball to the 10, and af­ter a six-yard Chris Daniels scram­ble, the se­nior quar­ter­back found John Tucker at the 1-yard line and de­liv­ered a pass that Tucker caught be­fore turn­ing and push­ing two de­fend­ers into the end zone with him for a score.

Phoebus’ swarm­ing de­fense mostly kept the War­riors in check, but Ke­cough­tan did break one big play on their sec­ond drive. Af­ter a Phoebus hold­ing penalty helped to set up a sec­ond-and-4 sit­u­a­tion from their 43, Jonathan Melvin found James Mozelle for a 45yard com­ple­tion to set up a first-and-10 from the Phantom 12. Melvin called his own num­ber on four straight plays, and on the fourth, pushed his line for­ward three yards be­fore break­ing the plane of the end zone for a touch­down.

Phoebus added three more points on their next pos­ses­sion, cour­tesy of a 28-yard An­thony Wal­lace field goal as the first quar­ter ended.

But the Phoebus of­fense broke open on their next drive. A 20-yard com­ple­tion to La­trelle Smith set up the game’s key play as Daniels sent Barry Har­graves on a deep post pat­tern, but hit White with a short pass, and the ju­nior back out­ran the Ke­cough­tan de­fense for a 52-yard touch­down, help­ing to give the Phan­toms a 17-7 half­time lead.

Daniels (seven of 14, 209 yards, two touch­downs ) scored on a three-yard run in the third quar­ter and later found White (79 rush­ing, 81 re­ceiv­ing yards, two scores) with a dump pass and the back weaved through the de­fense for a 29-yard touch­down.

Adam Hatcher put Ke­cough­tan on the board with a four-yard push into the end zone, but Phoebus put the ex­cla­ma­tion point on their per­for­mance as Daniels con­nected with Dalon Dixon down the right side­line for a 56-yard touch­down.

But with just un­der three min­utes re­main­ing, Phoebus’ Caleb Ran­dolph in­ter­cepted Jonathan Melvin and re­turned the ball for 20 yards be­fore be­ing knocked out of bounds on the Phantom side­line. Af­ter some brief shov­ing and jostling, about 20 mem­bers of the Ke­cough­tan team ran across the field and into the fray. Af­ter al­most two min­utes, the War­rior coaches crossed the field and got their team back to­ward their side­line, but the ref­er­ees de­cided to call the game.

Sev­eral play­ers will likely re­ceive dis­ci­plinary ac­tion for the in­ci­dent, and one Ke­cough­tan player, Nate Persinger, re­mained hor­i­zon­tal on the Phoebus side­line for five min­utes af­ter the game was called. He was taken off the field by stretcher and taken to a lo­cal hospi­tal.

Phoebus re­tains top spot in Penin­sula Dis­trict stand­ings

SEAN M. HAFFEY/GETTY IM­AGES

Max Muncy cel­e­brates his eigh­teenth in­ning walk-off home run to de­feat the the Sox 3-2 in Game Three.

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