By Alex Headley
Offense was the name of the game Friday night in the match between Pinson Valley High School and Curry High School, where the Indians defeated the Yellow Jackets 66 to 32.
Curry opened the game with a long drive resulting in a field goal, but the Indians answered right back, scoring on a 34-yard pass to AJ Freeman.
“We are giving it our all right now,” Freeman said. “The O-line did a great job for us.”
Curry was forced to punt on their next possession. Freeman returned the short kick for another touchdown, running 50 yards on the return for the score
. Freeman had 125 offensive yards throughout the night.
Starting quarterback Brooks Garrett had Indian fans on their feet just moments later as he rushed 80 yards downfield for a touchdown.
“I saw the hole and I just took off,” Garrett said. “It felt good. I want to be passing first and run second but, if it’s open, I’m going to try to run it. It was a good game; everyone did their jobs.”
Garrett’s run brought the score to 21 to 3. Freeman then rushed 71 yards in the opening moments of the second quarter for another touchdown run.
Garrett completed 10 of 13 passes for 213 yards passing and 5 touchdown passes. He had 80 yards rushing and one rushing touchdown.
“The offense played well,” Head Coach Matt Glover said. “Coach Mills did a good job calling the plays and they did a good job executing. We have to find ways to get our playmakers the ball.”
The Yellow Jackets answered back with a short pass into the end zone to bring the score up to 28 to 10.
Earnest Robinson got on the board on a 29-yard reception with 7 minutes left in the second quarter. Curry scored again after a 33-yard pass with 5:32 in the half. A 25-yard touchdown pass to Harry Mason brought the score up to 42 to 17 at the end of the half.
The Yellow Jackets came back into the game fired up, scoring on the opening drive of the second half.
An onside kick let Curry regain possession early, but the Jackets failed to score on the ensuing drive.
Pinson continued its offensive march, scoring with two back-to-back touchdown passes: first, a 55-yard pass to Nick Gibson and next, a 14-yard pass to Earnest Robinson, bringing the Indians score up to 56.
Freshman quarterback Ko Powell got in the game in the final quarter, first as a receiver, then later as quarterback. Powell found Freeman with a 15-yard pass for his fourth touchdown of the night.
“Ko is doing great,” Glover said. “He is a team player. We are trying to find him a place on the team. He is a competitor and that is the kind of kid you want on the field.”
A field goal brought the Indians to their final score of 66 with five minutes left in the game.
Curry got on the board one last time with less than three minutes on the clock, bringing the game to its final score of 66 to 32.
The Indians will host regional opponent Springville High School at home next week for homecoming.
“Springville is a big game,” Glover said. “I’m from Springville and I coached there. It’s always a big game for me. I hope everyone comes out next week for homecoming to cheer our boys on. We want a good crowd. “
The Indians are now 4-3 in the regular season and 4-1 in regional play.
“We are trying to get ready for the playoffs,” Glover said. “We are just trying to work on ourselves and get better. We still have a lot of mental mistakes that we need to fix. We still have too many penalties.”
Injuries have been an issue as well this season, most notably when starting quarterback Brooks Garrett suffered a concussion in the season opener with Oneonta. Jalen Rhone was benched for the match with Curry.
“We are still down a couple of players,” Glover said. “We haven’t had everyone healthy all year.”