FRI­DAY NIGHT LIGHTS

Pho­tos and re­sults from Peters­burg Foot­ball’s game at Mead­ow­brook

The Progress-Index Weekend - - FRONT PAGE - By Nick Vandeloecht Sports Edi­tor

CH­ESTER­FIELD - Wa­ter flung about as soggy cleats dug into the muddy field and steady rain­con­tin­ued to­fall on­the grid­iron be­long­ing to a Mead­ow­brook Foot­ball team try­ing to end a dif­fer­ent kind of drought.

The Mon­archs came into Fri­day’s home game ver­sus Peters­burg hop­ing to end their eight-game slide.

But the Crim­son Wave, af­ter mak­ing waves on the en­thu­si­as­tic slides across the slip­pery side­lines prior to kick­off, stormed the end zone in the sec­ond half to not only keep Mead­ow­brook in search of its first win of 2018, but also se­cure the first win­ning sea­son for Peters­burg Foot­ball since 2010 on the 22-0 shutout.

“As a team, we just had to step up and dig deep and just have the heart to fin­ish out the game, get this W,” said Peters­burg ju­nior Bran­don Harvell, who scored the first two touch­downs in the Crim­son Wave’s vic­tory.

“I feel like kind of over­achieved with the num­bers that we had, so I’m pretty proud of the win,” Peters­burg Foot­ball head coach Mike Scott said af­ter the cold and rainy game. “It was messy, but we got the vic­tory...”

It was a bounce­back win for Peters­burg af­ter tak­ing back-to-back losses to Thomas Dale in a 28-24 nail­biter and to Dinwiddie on a fi­nal mark of 56-20.

“We had a rough time ver­sus Dinwiddie last week and we were anx­ious to get back on the field,” Coach Scott said, “and I feel like to­day, we got back on track…”

Meziah Scott and Up­ton Bai­ley heated up the Crim­son Wave’s of­fense in the third quar­ter as Scott, ex­pertly uti­liz­ing the fake hand­off in the cold rain, mixed in the short passes to his re­ceivers with a size­able run over the mid­dle of the field, and Bai­ley bar­reled 30 yards for­ward to the 5-yard line.

Harvell mus­cled his way across the goal line for the touch­down, and Scott, slash­ing to his right on the QB keeper, splashed into the end zone on the spin­ning dive to add two more points.

Harvell tacked on an­other six - this time on de­fense, as he caught an in­ter­cep­tion and raced it down the right side and to the house for his sec­ond TD of the night.

“I just read the play and I knew the play was com­ing due to watch­ing film,” Harvell said. “And I just used my IQ.”

Scott and Bai­ley stayed hot on the chilly night as they glided across the wet field on the fiery runs un­til Bai­ley, break­ing free and dash­ing to­wards the edge, scored from 12 yards out.

“We couldn’t re­ally throw the ball to­day like we wanted to, and with our of­fense, we’re a bal­anced team - we’re run­ning, we’re pass­ing,” Coach Scott said. “Tonight we had to go heavy with the run and I feel like Meziah ran the ball well, Up­ton ran the ball well, Bran­don ran the ball well…”

And Ron­dayle Smith came in and also im­pressed Coach Scott with his ef­forts in the run game, as he added the fi­nal two points on a run to book­end Bai­ley’s touch­down.

“We’re still try­ing to add some more backs to our back­field and im­prove our run­ning game a lit­tle bit be­cause we rely on Meziah so much,” Coach Scott said. “We’ve just got to find a way to get other guys in­volved of­fen­sively.”

The two teams sloshed through a score­less first half with the Crim­son Wave turn­ing the ball over on downs deep in Mead­ow­brook’s ter­ri­tory mul­ti­ple times, and the Mon­archs’ of­fense struggling to get out of their own red zone un­til their fi­nal drive of the half.

“The first half, we just left a lot of scores off the board,” Coach Scott said. “I feel like we didn’t have the heart and will to get it in [dur­ing] the first half. We kind of just didn’t un­der­stand that, no mat­ter what, we need to get it in and it’s a men­tal thing. The sec­ond half, we came in at half­time, we talked about: we need to make a big play... when we get close to the end zone, we need to fin­ish it.

“We did that a lit­tle bit more in the sec­ond half, but we still left a cou­ple out there,” Scott said. “But it’s still back to work again.”

And Scott did feel that his team played bet­ter de­fen­sively on Fri­day as they pitched the shutout with sev­eral turnovers on downs plus the de­fen­sive touch­down scored by Harvell.

In the first half, Shawn Scott Jr. halted one of the Mon­archs’ drives by in­ter­cept­ing a deep pass in front of the in­tended wide re­ceiver, and Rashad Moore sacked the quar­ter­back for a big loss on the Mon­archs’ fi­nal try to force third and long be­fore half­time. The Mon­archs punted it away with four sec­onds left.

Mead­ow­brook con­verted two fourth downs on in­stances that saw the of­fi­cials run the chains over to the ball for mea­sure­ment. Paul Davis late in the fourth quar­ter broke loose on a mon­ster run to push his Mon­archs into the Crim­son Wave’s ter­ri­tory, and he struck again to move the Mon­archs to the red zone. But the Wave’s de­fend­ers chased down the ball car­rier along the right edge and kept him out of the end zone to turn the ball back over to Peters­burg with 40 sec­onds re­main­ing.

Go­ing into this com­ing Fri­day’s reg­u­lar sea­son fi­nale, Coach Scott called his 6-3 Crim­son Wave “heavy un­der­dogs ver­sus Ma­toaca,” who af­ter start­ing the sea­son 0-6 is look­ing to close out the sea­son on four straight wins. He’s been watch­ing the War­riors week af­ter week, and their 3-6 record doesn’t re­flect how good they are, he said.

“Ma­toaca’s a very good foot­ball team,” Coach Scott said, hav­ing added ear­lier: “We’re just gonna go out there, play as hard as we can and try to get ready for th­ese play­offs hope­fully.”

Nick Vandeloecht may be reached at nvan­de­loecht@ progress-in­dex.com, 804-722-5151 or @ Nick­VanDelPI on Twit­ter.

[NICK VANDELOECHT/PRO­GRESSIN­DEX.COM]

Peters­burg Foot­ball’s Bran­don Harvell runs the ball in the Crim­son Wave’s Fri­day night game at Mead­ow­brook.

[NICK VANDELOECHT/PROGRESS-IN­DEX. COM]

Peters­burg Foot­ball’s Up­ton Bai­ley runs the ball in the Crim­son Wave’s Fri­day night game at Mead­ow­brook.

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