The high school football season has just passed the midway point, but Columbia County's middle-school teams completed their gridiron campaigns last week.
When the final whistle blew Tuesday, the Evans Middle School Knights became the kings of Columbia County.
Evans Middle posted an 8-6 win over Riverside Middle School, as the Knights clinched a perfect 6-0 record in 2003.
Early in the season it appeared that Evans Middle School would cruise through the season without a serious challenge.
Through four games the Knights' average margin of victory was nearly 30 points, and the routs could have been worse, because Evans Middle surrendered some late scores after the outcomes were no longer in doubt.
Things got tougher in the end. The Knights had to battle to beat Grovetown (22-16) and Riverside (8-6), but Evans Middle still outscored its opponents 180-58 in the six wins.
Evans Middle School was led by quarterback Kevin Millward. The 5-foot-11, 205-pound Millward was a national Punt, Pass & Kick champion last winter, and he showed off his skills again this fall.
With Millward behind center, the Knights threw between seven and 10 times per game, which is a high number of pass attempts for a middle-school program.
Millward had some great targets, especially in split end Jonathan Nicely, an eighth-grader who stands 6-foot-2. Also hauling in receptions was exciting seventh-grader Chris Marshall, who starred at flanker and running back.
Marshall added four touchdowns on kick returns, including two in a victory over Lakeside Middle School.
Evans Middle also exhibited a strong rushing game, which was led by Zach Boulineau's huge season at running back.
Some of the offensive stars also led the way on defense. Millward (linebacker), Boulineau (linebacker), Marshall (safety) and Nicely (defensive end) keyed the defensive unit, while defensive lineman Reese Glisson and linebacker Nathan Kratz also sparked the Knights.
Evans completed its perfect season despite fielding one of the smallest number of players of any of the county's seven middle-school squads.
Congratulations to the Knights and their fans on a great season, and hats off to the coaching staff, which consists of head coach and offensive coordinator Carter Morris, defensive coordinator Blake Crewe, and assistant coaches Sean Crites and Francis Carver.
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