Escambia High Gators: Schedules and Varsity Game Summary

Catholic defense seals win
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Crusaders battle offensive blunders, survive Escambia
Chuck Corder • News Journal correspondent • October 16, 2010
And so the education of young Cody Henry continues
With starter and News Journal Super Senior Shaun White still nursing an ankle injury, Catholic coach Greg Seibert once again turned to Henry for the Crusaders' homecoming tilt against Escambia on Friday.

After a first half where Henry could do no wrong, the freshman — barely 15 years old — struggled with ball control in the final 24 minutes.

Class 2B No. 2-ranked Catholic leaned on a stingy defense to bail its offense out, for once, and secure the 27-13 victory against the Gators (4-2).

"For as special as I think Cody Henry has the potential to be, he's still 15 years old," Seibert said. "He's got a lot of film to watch, a lot of football to play. Every single mistake he made was only counteracted by all the good plays he made in the first half."

And, man, did the freshman make a ton of good memories early on.

He completed 13 of 18 passes in the first half for 194 yards as the Crusaders (7-0) built a 27-0 halftime cushion.

Whether it was throws down the middle of the field, on out routes near the sideline, on screens — you name it — Henry's repertoire is impressive.

"He was extremely sharp," Seibert said of Henry's start. "We put in a game plan that was expressly for him."

Those X's and O's, though, began to get a little muddled when the second half began.

On his third pass of the third quarter, Henry threw short of his intended target and Escambia defensive back Shamarae Watts made him pay. Watts jumped the route and never stopped running until he found the end zone 53 yards later.

Following a three-and-out on its next possession, disaster hit Catholic again. As Henry rolled left on first down from his own 20, Destin Marable knocked the ball loose and Austin Waid calmly picked it up and raced in from 11 yards out.

"I was proud of the way our kids competed in the second half," Escambia coach Scott Anderson said. "We made two egregious errors on special teams. We will get better."

The second Escambia mistake midway through the second quarter proved costly.

After Catholic had gone up 14-0 on Simon Smiley's second 2-yard touchdown run, Crusaders kicker Parker McIntosh delivered a perfect pooch kick.

The ball bounced in no-man's land around a handful of Gators, allowing Samson Smiley to cover it up around the Escambia 20 before it could trickle out of bounds.

Two plays later, Eddie Matthews darted in from two yards out to make it 21-0 with 5:19 left before half.

It was more than enough for Catholic's defense, which forced one turnover in each half.

"You know in the past weeks, people have challenged the defense to show up," said Demarius Rancifer, whose forced fumble led to kicker Chase Kiefer's second field goal (40, 38) as time expired in the first half.

"The 'O' was having a hard time tonight, so we stepped up and filled those holes."
First Quarter
C - Simon Smiley 2 run (Chase Kiefer kick), 5:39.

Second Quarter
C - Smiley 2 run (Kiefer kick), 5:53.
C - Eddie Matthews 2 run (Kiefer kick), 5:19.
C - Kiefer 40 FG, 0:55.
C - Kiefer 38 FG, 0:00.

Third Quarter
E - Shamarae Watts 57 int return (Jonathon Lister kick), 10:41.
E - Austin Waid 11 fumble return (kick failed), 7:48.

Fourth Quarter
No scoring.

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