CHARMCO, W.Va. – A fumble recovery near the Cavalier goal line with about three minutes to go in the fourth quarter helped the Sherman Tide secure a hard fought 22-21 road win over Greenbrier West.
“To be honest, our game ball may go to our punter (Cordell Parsons),” said head coach J.D. Fairchild. “He kept us in this game and kept them pinned back. He did an outstanding job.”
Parsons punted seven times in the contest for an average of 44.7 per kick. He landed two punts inside the Cavalier 20-yard line twice in the game. His longest was a booming 52 yarder.
“Greenbrier West had a good game plan,” said Fairchild. “They were pounding us up the middle out of an I-formation and then popping one out there (pass) and breaking it. We had to adjust to that.”
Tide quarterback Bailey Kirk made his second score of the night an important one as he crossed the goal line on a quarterback sneak call by the Tide coaching staff with about two minutes left in the fourth quarter. Running back Willen Christian punched in the 2-point conversion that gave the Tide the decisive edge for the victory.
“They came back out and tried to throw the ball down the field and we shut it down,” said Fairchild. “We got a first down and then it was a victory formation.”
Fairchild said that Sherman spread the offensive load around which kept fresh legs carrying the ball on a cold and rainy night with poor field conditions.
“We had trouble getting something consistent going offensively,” he said. “They couldn’t ether, they hit a couple of long passes and made good calls dumping to their tight end. We didn’t tackle well either but our defense forced a lot of three and outs.”
Sophomore receiver J.T. Hensley suffered an ankle injury that will be evaluated.
The Sherman players are staying focused on their goal of a deep playoff run with their own “One Team One Dream” concept. Coach Fairchild said that his message this week will be direct. His squad was ranked No. 13 in Class A entering the Greenbrier West game. No. 3 South Harrison and No. 8 Van suffered losses on Friday but the Bulldogs beat Sherman two weeks ago in a head to head county rivalry tilt.
“To keep that dream alive you have to win,” he said. “River View on Friday is our focus and an 8-2 season would be great compared to where we’ve been and having a real good shot of making the playoffs is great for our kids. It’s right there in their hands and they just have to snatch the opportunity.”
Bailey Kirk led the Sherman rushing attack with 69 yards on 18 carries and two scores, Ben Salmons had 56 yards on 12 carries and a touchdown, Willen Christian had 35 yards on 12 touches and Austin Cooper had 25 yards on five rushes.
Tyler Pettry caught a pass for 25 yards and Salmon had one catch for a 2-yard gain. Colton Bassham led all tacklers with seven, Kirk and Layne Daniel had six. John Dickens, Dylan Richmond and Ian Beller had five each to lead the Tide defense. Beller had a sack for a 5-yard loss. Dickens (2), Kirk and Hensley recovered fumbles in the game.
Sherman (7-2) will host River View (2-6) on Friday.