By: Erik Harris
CLAY–Nobody, including the Clay-Chalkville High School student section—better known as the Blue Crew—could keep up with the Cougar offense on Friday night.
Quarterback Tyrell Pigrome led his unit to a historic night as No. 1 Clay-Chalkville (11-0) downed visiting Scottsboro, 85-50, in the opening round of the Alabama High School Athletic Association Class 6A playoffs.
“They couldn’t stop us,” said Cougars coach Jerry Hood. “I don’t know if that record will ever be broken at Clay-Chalkville.
The record he is referring to is the most points scored in a single game in school history.
Fans have grown accustom to watching Blue Crew members pump out push-ups after every Cougar score on Friday nights, but the scholars were nowhere to be found in the second half of the playoff contest.
Their absence might have had something to do with the 47-20 reading on the scoreboard through two quarters of play. Under their usual routine, the students would have pumped out over 150 reps through the first half alone, thanks to their classmates on the field.
Sophomore wideout Nico Collins did his fair share of damage to that total. He was Pigrome’s choice target of the night, catching six passes for 180 yards and two touchdowns.
His first came in the second quarter and put the home team up 34-14 with 6:31 remaining before the break. His second came on the Cougar’s first play out of intermission and gave the good guys a 54-20 advantage.
As solid as the Pigrome to Collins connection was, it couldn’t keep up with the friendship on the other side. Scottsboro quarterback Bo Nix found sophomore receiver Malik Talley five times for 162 yards and four touchdowns.
“(Talley) might be the fastest receiver we’ve seen since I’ve been at Clay,” Hood said. “That kid could go, and our kids are not slow.”
That connection haunted the Clay-Chalkville defense all night. They hooked up for the first time with 7:12 remaining in the first for a 43-yard score to pull the Wildcats to within six. Their final pitch and catch went 15 yards to the end zone and made the score 64-40 early in the fourth quarter.
Nix, an eighth grader, only completed nine of his 29 attempts. But he made the most of his completions as he finished with 191 yards and five touchdowns through the air.
Senior running back Terrelle West gave the Cougars 149 yards on 13 carries and two touchdowns in the first half. West had no second-half carries.
Pigrome went 10-for-16 for 256 yards and four scores through the air.
For the third consecutive year, Clay-Chalkville has marched past their first-round opponent. Muscle Shoals (8-2) will be the challenge in next Friday’s second round.
“The last time (Muscle Shoals) was at Clay-Chalkville, they beat us in the spring game, beat the dog out of us, so obviously they’re a great team,” said Hood.