GCM surrenders 42-0 run in loss against Clear Falls
Anything that could go wrong, did, and the Goose Creek Memorial football team enters its bye week in a mostly undesired fashion.
Or does it?
The Patriots watched as the Clear Falls Knights scored 42 unanswered points thanks to a mixed bag of big plays of their own combined with GCM costly miscues to roll out to a 62-21 non-district win Friday night at Stallworth Stadium.
The Patriots (1-2) enter the bye week before beginning District 9-5A I play against Houston Austin at 7 p.m. on Sept. 27 at Stallworth.
Some would say the loss was the worst way to go into the two weeks off, but GCM head coach Shannon Carter believes if anything it’s better now than later.
“It’s a blessing in disguise that we did have our stinker tonight and we have a lot of film to watch and correct,” Carter said. “Sometimes when you face adverse situations you get the team’s attention versus when it’s rolling very well.
“We got two weeks to prepare for the football games that really count. We have to turn a negative into a positive. We don’t have time to lick our wounds.”
Carter was remiss about his team’s inability to get anything going, but also chalked it up to being bested by a superior Clear Falls (3-0) squad.
“It’s just one of those Friday nights where they didn’t do anything we didn’t prepare for all week, they just executed at a high level,” Carter said. “We got beat by the better team. There were a lot of third-down plays where we couldn’t get off the field – three times on their first drive – and it just spiraled from there.
“We just couldn’t get any traction and they had a lot to do with it.”
The Patriots were undone by five turnovers for the second consecutive week.
It also appeared the team lacked its usually verve before the game and having lost defensive captain, junior linebacker Bryce Johnston to injury this week, didn’t help.
“They were ready to play and were prepared, but they weren’t themselves tonight and the opponent had something to do with that,” Carter said. “I wish I could pinpoint it. Bryce is our leader on defense, he gets us lined up and we definitely missed him tonight. We had the other kids prepared we just didn’t execute.”
Carter noted that the Knights are an explosive offense that executes very well and the GCM defense was just unable to make key stops.
Especially the pivotal one in the third quarter.
Midway through that period, Clear Falls faced a fourth-and-goal from the GCM 36 and still managed to score on a long pass – one of six touchdown tosses by Knight quarterback Gavin Esquivel – to go up 41-14 at the 7:36 mark.
A Patriot stop would have given them ball in good field position and a chance to pull within two scores with plenty of time left.
“We are just young on the back end and it’s fourth-and-36,” Carter said. “It’s a learning experience and our kids have got to understand the situation. We work on it every day in practice and I take full blame. I have to do a better job.”
GCM’s scores came on a first quarter 12-yard touchdown pass from Emerson Haywood to Hosea Lane and a 27-yard scoring scamper by Haywood about 11 minutes later.
Dylan Pitre got into the end zone with four seconds remaining in the game on an 11-yard dash to the end zone for the Patriots.
GCM was led by Haywood (7-for-10 passing for 87 yards, four carries, 51 yards and two catches, 33 yards), Bryce Gillum (11 carries, 38 yards), Pitrie (six carries, 38 yards), Taaron Roberts (three catches, 71 yards).
Clear Falls 62, GCM 21
CF 20 14 14 14 = 62
GCM 7 7 0 7 = 21
CF - Quinn Bowen 1-run (kick failed), 8:49
GCM - Hosea Lane 12-pass from Emerson Haywood (Luis Acosta kick), 7:31
CF - Michael Ramirez 50-pass from Gavin Esquivel (Robert Gonzales kick), 6:05
CF - Ramirez 14-pass from Esquivel (Gonzales kick), :26
GCM - Haywood 27-run (Acosta kick), 8:49
CF - Brandon Howard 34-pass from Esquivel (Gonzales kick), 7:52
CF - Howard 28-pass from Esquivel (Gonzales kick), 4:40
CF - Hilton Koch 36-pass from Esquivel (Gonzales kick), 7:36 4th goal from 36
CF - Adam Stevenson 35-pass (Gonzales kick), :14
CF - Esquivel 4-run (Gonzales kick), 8:15
CF - Ramirez 4-run (Gonzales kick), 3:44
GCM - Dylan Pitre 11-run (Acosta kick), :04