By Brandon Speck/NEMS Daily Journal
SHANNON – Aberdeen, behind the strong play of sophomore QB Josh Williams and its defense, defeated Shannon 26-13 Friday night.
Shannon had just pulled within 20-13 when Williams hit Aaron McMillian in stride on a 67-yard TD pass.
“We had just told them they were about to throw the ball,” Shannon first-year coach Darryl Carter said. “We said it in the huddle.”
It was the final pass of Williams’ 9 for 9, 163-yard, two-touchdown game. Capped with a stifling fourth-down defense, the Journal’s fifth-ranked Class 3A/4A school Bulldogs (1-1) got their first win.
Aberdeen scored on its first three possessions, two off of Shannon (0-2) turnovers on downs. Williams found Kenric McCoy for a 13-yard touchdown on the first drive.
“He made good decisions, ran the ball hard,” Aberdeen coach Mark Bray said. “Defensively, we had some kids who really made big plays.”
Two plays into the second quarter, Aberdeen junior back Chico Harrison bulled into the end zone from 15 yards out for a 12-0 lead.
The Bulldogs made it 20-0 on a 14-yard run from Justin Lucas. Williams found McMillian for a two-point conversion.
“We played really hard in the first half and just sort of ran out of gas in the second half,” Bray said.
Shannon got on the board in the second with John Thomas Peugh’s keeper from two yards away. The score was set up by a 52-yard catch-and-run to Mark Seals on third-and-18.
Aberdeen stopped the Raiders again before the half on a fourth-and-inches. Freshman Chris Hunt led a trio that got Diamante Pounds for a 2-yard loss. Pounds had 132 yards on 20 carries for Shannon.
Shannon threatened to pull within a TD early in the third. Harrison fumbled on the second play of the half and Shannon marched 36 yards to the Aberdeen 13 before Lucas, who had two interceptions, picked Peugh and went 49 yards the other way. Four flags halted that drive.
Shannon gave Aberdeen the ball back at the Raider 27, but Aberdeen gave it back at the 12 on a turnover. Shannon turned it back over 13 plays later. On Shannon’s next drive, Devan Gilleylen led a 70-yard drive that ended in an 18-yard TD pass to Chavis Dilworth.