Sussex County Delaware

High School Football
Game of the Week
The Sussex County High School Football Game of the Week

Game of the Week ...

Sept. 24, 1999:
Laurel Humbled
by Smyrna

Story | Photo | Scoring | Quotes | Notes
Previous Games of the Week

Game of the Week Story ...

Photo: Sussex Central's Ben Rogers fakes out a would-be Cape tackler on a punt return during SC's 9-0 win on Friday, Oct. 1, 1999.

GEORGETOWN -- Sussex Central High School football coach John Wells would only call it "one step". But it was a big one.

The Golden Knights ended visiting Cape Henlopen's two-year winning streak in the Henlopen Conference with a 9-0 smash-mouth Northern Division victory over the two-time defending division champions Friday night, Oct. 1, 1999.

The unbeaten Knights' suffocating defense and knack for putting together killer drives at the most opportune moments enabled them to overcome two first-half fumbles and rise to 4-0 overall.

Toby Hall's 34-yard field goal with 2.6 seconds left in the first half and a 6-yard touchdown run to cap an 86-yard third quarter drive by fullback Teddy Thompson gave the Knight defense all of the points it would need.

Cape Henlopen (2-2) threatened to make a game of it after Thompson's touchdown, but a 12-play drived ended at Sussex Central's 5-yard line when receiver Mark Moore's fumble was recovered by Knight defensive back Blake Hershelman with 7:32 remaining in the game.

That proved to be Cape's last gasp, as the Knights held the ball for the next 6 minutes, running the clock down to the 1:01 mark before surrendering on downs at the Cape 19.

The Knights dominated the game with 289 total yards to Cape's 155. Sussex Central running back Burless Hall ground out 131 of his team's 253 rushing yards.

The Knights won the game despite the loss of standout fullback George Davis to a suspension earlier in the week. Ben Rogers moved from halfback to fullback and gained 67 yards rushing.

Game of the Week Photos ...

Sussex Central running back Burless Hall

Sussex Central coach John Wells (left) confers with his assistants while Golden Knight running back Burless Hall sweeps around left end for some of his 131 yards rushing.

Sussex Central head coach John Wells
Game of the Week Scoring ...


Second Quarter:

:2.6 -- SUSSEX CENTRAL, 3-0
Toby Hall 34 Field Goal

Third Quarter:

1:29 -- SUSSEX CENTRAL, 9-0
Teddy Thompson 6 run
PAT: No Good

Game of the Week Quotes ...

Laurel head coach Paul Kmetz on the Henlopen South:

Laurel running back John Cahall"The days are over when you had mismatches in the Henlopen Conference. Everybody is equal and if everybody is equal, then it comes down to who prepares the best. The realization that these guys have to come to is everybody is equal. Every game will be a dogfight. People have to get used to it."

Kmetz on his team's fumbles, including three by senior running back Titus Mims, who finished with 189 yards:

"The turnovers were just a matter of people trying to make an extra effort and doing more than they really can. You can't fault them for that."

Kmetz on his halftime message with Laurel down 14-0:

"We felt we would get six possessions in the second half and that if we could hold them and score on half of our possessions, we could win the game."

Kmetz on sophomore Smyrna running back Mike Pennewell, who finished with 158 yards rushing including TDs of 14 and 56 yards:

"He ran for 140 yards against Middletown in their opener and 200 yards last week. I don't think any teams even ran for 140 yards against Middletown last year. He's the real deal."

Game of the Week Notes ...

  • The Bulldogs' touchdown midway through the fourth quarter was their first of the season after seven scoreless quarters.

  • Surprisingly, by game's end, Laurel had actually outgained Smyrna 338 yards to 336 -- 147 of those yards came on Laurel's final two drives in the fourth quarter against Smyrna subs.

  • Laurel quarterback Shawn Phillips, trying to fill the shoes of graduated standout Mike Moore, finally started to find the mark in the second half, going 5-for-11 for 107 yards. He was only 1 of 4 for 7 yards in the first half.

  • The Bulldogs committed 8 penalties for 68 yards.

Other Games of the Week ...

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