Block party: Edwards’ all-around play lifts Keith over ECA

Published 1:00 am Saturday, September 15, 2018

Jared Edwards turned the Keith High-Ellwood Christian showdown into a block party.

The junior blocked two punts and accounted for two touchdowns, leading the Bears to a 46-8 victory on Friday at Memorial Stadium.

Keith (2-1, 1-1) won its first Region 3-1A contest of the season behind an all-around performance from Edwards, who had 200-yards of total offense. He passed for 137 and ran for 63 more yards.

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“I just went out and played ball,” Edwards said. “I’m glad that we got the win, but I can play better. I’ve got things to fix and work on.”

Bears coach Anthony Lumpkin praised Edwards after the game.

“Jared Edwards is our utility man,” Lumpkin said. “He can do a lot of things for our team. He’s our big playmaker.”

Edwards’ first blocked punt set up his 52-yard touchdown pass to Tyrell Lumpkin. Jaylin Jones’ two-point conversion run gave the Bears an 8-0 first quarter lead.

Keith scored 22 second quarter points to grab an insurmountable 30-0 halftime lead.

Levi Thomas’ 7-yard touchdown and Edwards’ 25-yard touchdown run were sandwiched between a safety. Derrell Benjamin’s 16-yard touchdown closed the first half scoring for the Bears. Kendarius Perry scored on a two-point conversion run.

“The first half was huge for us because we came out and scored points,” Lumpkin said. “That put pressure on them and we knew they had to throw the ball.”

A running clock in the second half couldn’t keep Keith off the scoreboard.

Ledell Edwards’ 25-yard touchdown run and Edwards’ two-point conversion pass to Jones gave the Bears a 38-0 third quarter lead.

The Bears’ final touchdown came on Edwards’ 25-yard touchdown midway in the fourth quarter. Perry scored on a two-point conversion run to make it 46-0.

ECA (0-3, 0-2) avoided a shutout when Jacobie Smiley threw a 15-yard touchdown pass to Justin Bufford with 50 seconds left to play.

Eagles coach Migeual Catlin made no excuses for his winless team’s performance.

“We had several bright spots, the defense played well at times,” Catlin said. “We played selfish ball. We have to come to practice and do all the little things. We’ve got to get back on track and play assignment football.”

Both teams are on the road next week. Keith travels to Maplesville. ECA travels to Francis Marion.