WOODSTOCK — Central coach Mike Yew couldn’t have been more proud of his team’s effort last week against Staunton.
The Falcons, who have a bye this week, overcame adversity and held the Storm scoreless in the second half of a 14-12 non-district football victory. Yew has said all season that his kids have played hard and he said it was more of the same against Staunton.
“I thought we did what we’ve done all year,” Yew said before Wednesday’s practice. “We probably played even harder (against Staunton) than we played all year. I know that’s hard to say and I don’t want to contradict how hard we played but our kids really laid it on the line, especially the second half last week. We just really fought all night long.”
The Falcons (3-2) had to overcome injuries and other unforeseen circumstances. In the first quarter, Central backup quarterback Dylan Hamrick suffered a leg injury and could not return. Later in the contest, Central senior quarterback Kelan Hoover was ejected from the game.
Yew said the ejection has since been overturned and Hoover will be eligible to play next week against Skyline. Yew said the referees and the referee commissioner looked at the film on Monday and overturned the call.
Without a quarterback, the Falcons turned to senior running back Billy Ball and senior wide receiver Landon Shockey to take turns at the position and Yew said he used them as running backs from the quarterback spot.
“Landon (Shockey) and Billy (Ball) did a great job,” Yew said. “So anything that we’ve asked the kids to do they have really stepped up and done a good job.”
PLAYMAKER: One of the biggest plays of the game against Staunton was made by wide receiver/defensive back Brevin Scott.
The junior was able to strip the ball and recover the fumble after a pass reception by Staunton late in the game at the Central 19-yard line. The Falcons were able to run out the clock after the play.
Yew said that Scott has been consistent all season for Central.
“I think the words that really describe Brevin (Scott) is he’s not flashy, but he’s very steady,” Yew said. “You can count on him. He’s got a good set of hands. He runs good routes. He plays his technique on defense. He makes plays for us. He’s a solid tackler, but he’s not a speed burner. He’s not a guy that’s going to do like (Central 2019 graduate) Kyle (Clanton) last year and just run by you. So I think the biggest compliment I can pay to him is just he is accountable and he’s steady.”
Scott leads the Falcons with 11 receptions for 151 yards and one touchdown. Defensively, Scott has 11 tackles for Central.
Yew said that Scott showed last year that he had potential when he played in a few 10th grade football games for the Falcons.
“We had some 10th grade games last year, where Brevin (Scott) went down and got some reps and really started to give us the sign that he was going to really help us as a junior sooner rather than later,” Yew said. “The Brentsville game he had a couple of interceptions, he had a couple nice catches and that kind of said ‘hey, he’s going to be OK.’ Sophomores — you never really know what you’re getting. Sometimes they develop later. But Brevin I think started to come into his own last year in the 10th grade games.”
WORK IN PROGRESS: Yew said that the Falcons’ running game showed signs of improvement against Staunton.
The Falcons have struggled this year running the ball. They lost most of their offensive line and running backs from last year to graduation.
“It’s still a work in progress and we’re still getting better every week,” Yew said. “Our kids ran the ball hard last week. We’re still not having that one guy whose like ‘hey, I’m a 20-carry guy for 130 yards.’ I don’t think we’ve had a running back yet carry the ball more than 11 times in a game. We share the load between Chris (Conner) and Alex Neff and Billy Ball and Isaiah Dyer. Those four guys have been getting the reps together.”
Connor leads the way with 172 yards on 36 carries and has two touchdowns. Neff has 167 yards and two scores on 32 carries. Dyer has 31 carries for 157 yards and two touchdowns and Ball has 13 carries for 62 yards and one score. Yew said that they are each a different type of runner.
“Isaiah is probably the workhorse out of all of them, because he’s our lead blocker,” Yew said. “So for him when he gets the ball it’s great. But when he doesn’t get the ball he’s got to work probably harder than anybody else, because he’s got to be the guy throwing that lead block on our lead plays. Chris (Conner) probably is more of the in-between-tackles kind of guy. Billy (Ball) definitely likes to stick his nose in there. Billy is asked to do a lot of the same stuff that we ask Isaiah to do. ...Alex Neff is probably a little faster than the rest of them. But for him it’s still a learning curve. He’s still a first-year running back.”