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Evans rolls in Class AAAAAA opener

Posted: November 15, 2017 - 2:33am
Evans’ Demekus Taylor runs as Drew’s Anthony Menchaca tries to make the tackle during Friday’s first-round playoff game. The Knights rolled to a win.

The stats were staggering from Friday night's first-round football playoff contest.

Evans and Drew combined for 44 first downs, more than 100 points and more than 1,000 yards of offense. In the end, the Knights emerged with a 69-32 win over Drew in the Class AAAAAA opener.

"It doesn't matter if it's pretty, ugly or somewhere in between," Evans coach Lemuel Lackey said. "It's about surviving and advancing.

"It's good for the kids to get that first playoff win."

Evans (9-2) advanced to the second round of the state playoffs for the first time since 2007. The Knights will play host to No. 4 Coffee in the second round at 7:30 p.m. Friday. The Trojans (7-3) feature a balanced attack that averages 193 rushing yards and 165 passing yards a contest.

"We've got another good football team coming in here," Lackey said. "Coffee's really good, and they do some good things. But we've been doing some things pretty well all year."

While Coffee features a potent offense, Evans has been almost unstoppable this season. Against Drew, the Knights posted 40 points or more for the 10th consecutive game. Evans recorded 603 yards of offense - 448 of that total on the ground.

Quarterback Damekus Taylor rushed 24 times for 262 yards with four touchdowns. He also went 7 for 10 passing for 155 yards with three touchdowns and an interception.

Corey Watkins, who scored on a 54-yard run, finished with 154 yards on 18 carries. Breshawn Willis caught four passes for 98 yards, three of the receptions for touchdowns.

Evans scored on its first four drives to build an early 28-6 lead. Drew scored and then recovered an onside kick. Five plays later, Cedric Davenport punched it in from the 8 to pull the Titans within 10.

Holding a 28-18 lead, Evans got the ball back on its 29 with 29 seconds left in the half. The Knights had no intentions of running out the clock. After Taylor tossed a short pass to Willis, he found Connor Warren on a 32-yard pass play, Evans storming down to the Drew 35. Then, Taylor dropped back and heaved a pass into the end zone for Willis, a back-breaking touchdown with 2.6 seconds left before intermission. The Knights led 35-18.

"I didn't even consider that," Lackey said about running out the clock. "We were doing well offensively. I thought that was just another opportunity to do something."

With the game having an arena football feel, Drew simply couldn't match Evans scoring. The Titans punted on three of their first four possessions of the second half. The Knights took advantage, pushing their lead into the 50s midway through the fourth quarter after Willis took a short pass from Taylor, juked several defenders and weaved through traffic for a 39-yard touchdown.

Drew finished with more than 400 total yards - 226 on the ground, 216 through the air.

After getting by the Titans, Evans returned to work this week. Focusing on Coffee,

"You look at your strengths and you want to tidy them up a little bit," Lackey said. "More importantly, you look at the things you didn't do well. We've got to address some things. We know that. At the same time, this thing is about getting the ball back to the offense. They did enough of that to where we could score some points against Drew."

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EVANS 69, DREW 32

Drew;6;12;6;8;-;32

Evans;14;21;14;20;-;69

First Quarter

E-Damekus Taylor 28 run (Max Tyler kick), 10:51

D-Derionte Kemp 8 run (kick failed), 4:09

E-Breshawn Willis 20 pass from Taylor (Tyler kick), 1:41

Second Quarter

E-Taylor 8 run (Tyler kick), 8:55

E-Taylor 20 run (Tyler kick), 7:09

D-Kemp 80 pass from Gary Tyner (run failed), 6:55

D-Cedric Davenport 8 run (run failed), 5:20

E-Willis 35 pass from Taylor (Tyler kick), :02

Third Quarter

E-Corey Watkins 54 run (Tyler kick), 7:53

D-Kemp 58 run (pass failed), 6:19

E-Taylor 2 run (Tyler kick), 3:47

Fourth Quarter

E-Willis 39 pass from Taylor (Jackson Adkins kick), 7:47

D-Tyner 2 run (Thomas Williams pass from Tyner), 4:40

E-JoFranStar Graham (Tyler kick), 1:23

E-Dedrick Holmes 37 interception return (kick failed), :57

 

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