Lemaster, Panthers pound Graham
Drew Lemaster swears he’s a smash-mouth power back.
He may want to review the film from Orange’s 35-0 win over hapless Graham on Friday.
Lewmaster, a fill-in for injured running back Patrick Pettiford, rang up 119 yards and a touchdown. And the 5-8, 175-pound sophomore busted a few moves to complement his straight-on furor.
The Panthers, ranked ninth in 3-A, remain unbeaten with the victory over Coach Pat Moser’s former Red Devils team.
Tay Jones rushed for 88 yards and three touchdowns, and Michael Bolden scored the Panthers’ other TD. Brad Barbee booted in all five extra-point attempts.
Graham was held to 99 yards offense by a punishing Panthers defense. Quarterback Jamie Newman didn’t complete his only pass, which went for 16 yards, until there was just 7:16 left in the game.
Lemaster credited his big night, the first time since middle school he played an entire game on offense, to “a lot of good blocking from my receivers and finding the edges.
“I’m more of, like, just hit people in the mouth,” said Lemaster, who usually plays linebacker. “I’m not very good with jukes, mostly just running over people, that’s my game.”
There were “big shoes to fill” with Pettiford out of the lineup with an ankle injury suffered in last week’s game against Riverside, Lemaster said.
“Pat is an amazing running back,” Lemaster said. “I was definitely nervous. I didn’t want to let my team down and hear you’re not as good as Pat. I wanted to definitely show what I could do.”
But he nearly muffed his 5-yard scoring plunge in the third quarter.
“I dropped the ball in the end zone, but I ended up getting it,” he said. “My armband was getting kind of slick from all the sweat, and it caught my armband.”
With Lemaster averaging 11 yards a rush and quarterback Garrett Cloer averaging 10 yards a pass in the first half, the Panthers had little trouble building an early lead over the Red Devils.
Bolden ran left, bounced off one harmless tackle attempt and pounded in 9 yards standing up for the Panthers’ first score.
Jones crashed up the middle on a misdirection play to make it 14-0. The score was set up on an explosive 46-yard punt return by J.D. Brooks from just inside Orange territory to the Graham 9. Brooks had a long punt return for a touchdown called back on an earlier series due to a pair of Orange penalties on the play.
Cloer rolled left out of the pocket, found Jones and laid it in his arms for a 16-yard scoring strike with 1:16 left in the half.
Lemaster zigged, zagged and dashed 5 yards for his TD to open the second half.
Also in the third quarter, Jones zipped around an unprotected left side of the field and crossed the goal line with no defenders anywhere near him to finish the scoring for the night.
Orange 35, Graham 0
Orange—Michael Bolden 9 run (Brad Barbee kick) 8:24
Orange—Tay Jones 5 run (Barbee kick) 9:05
Orange—Jones 16 pass from Garrett Cloer (Barbee kick) 1:16
Orange—Drew Lemaster 5 rush (Barbee kick) 8:56
Orange—Jones 10 rush (Barbee kick) 2:11
RUSHING—Graham, Ledarius Lee 9-33, Jamie Newman 11-23, Malik Springfield 2-6. Orange, Drew Lemaster 12-119, Tay Jones 12-88, Michael Bolden 7-45, Garrett Cloer. 4-17.
PASSING—Graham, Jamie Newman 1-12-16. Orange, Garrett Cloer 9-17-85.
RECEIVING—Graham, Don Evans 16. Orange, Joe Piscitelli 4-46, Tay Jones, 3-22, Ky Muller 1-13.
Records—Graham 0-4, Orange 4-0.