Raymer big man in Dresden win
Posted: Wednesday, September 5, 2012 1:52 pm
By MIKE HUTCHENS
Dynamite can indeed come in small packages.
Devan Raymer — generously listed at 5-8, 160 pounds in the Dresden program — blew up McKenzie with 312 rushing yards and four touchdowns Friday night to lead the sixth-ranked (Class 2A) Lions to a 35-14 triumph over the host Rebels.
The win was the third in as many games for Dresden and its first in District 13A play this season. McKenzie fell to 0-2 to start a season for the first time since 1995.
Raymer, who has stepped in at quarterback in a two-tight-end, double-wing wildcat set in the absence of injured starter Davis Moran who was hurt in the Lions opener and remains shelved, repeatedly exploded for big plays against McKenzie.
Even though the Rebels knew what was coming, the diminutive Raymer called his own number often on zone-read plays and used his gritty nature and sneaky speed to run for TDs of 11, 73, 56 and 35 yards — the last two scores coming in a 21-point fourth quarter after the two teams entered the final 12 minutes tied at 14-all.
Now with 10 touchdowns in Dresden’s first three games, nothing the wingback-turned-quarterback in his team’s altered offensive scheme has surprised first-year head coach Keith Hodge.
“I could line him up at center or right guard or offensive tackle, and he’d never blink and we’d be just fine,” Hodge said of offensive dynamo — who also snuffed out a McKenzie scoring threat with an endzone interception just before halftime — after Friday’s victory. “He’s just our go-to guy. He plays so hard and has such a love for the game.
“I think if you’d ask him, though, he’d be the first to credit the offensive line and the rest of his teammates for any success he has. He’s just that type of kid.”
Raymer had most of his success running behind the right side of the Lion offensive line with Todd Morgan, Zac Seat, Josh Turnbow and Austin Parsley, along with tight-end Ben Kendall effectively creating creases and opening holes.
“We were pretty good up front,” confirmed Hodge, whose club rushed for 382 yards while only attempting two passes — both of which fell incomplete.
Deadlocked with the Rebels at 14 apiece entering the fourth quarter, Raymer darted 56 yards for the go-ahead TD on a counter player with 10:53 to play.
Torres Washington bounced outside left and sped 21 yards to paydirt for an insurance score with just over three minutes to play before the Lions’ Logan Thomas recovered a pooch kickoff to set up the last of Raymer’s touchdown scampers from 35 yards out with 2:03 showing.
The Dresden defense came up big, too, at crunch time, holding the host team to three-and-outs on each of its four fourth-quarter possessions.
Joey Caldwell dropped Christopher Allen for a six-yard loss on one critical third-down play, while linebacker Austin Daniel and interior lineman Alex Ellison had timely tackles for little gain or minus-yardage on another possession.
In all, the Lions allowed McKenzie just 52 total yards and three first downs over the final two period.
“Our defense came up big when we needed them,” Hodge confirmed. “It was just a heckuva job by them at the most critical time of the ballgame.”
Dresden’s two first-half TDs came in contrasting fashion — the first after a 12-play drive on their first possession when it overcame a holding penalty, the second on a 73-yard dash by Raymer just three snaps after McKenzie had evened the score on Allen’s 17-yard touchdown on the first play of the second quarter.
Hunter Lowe’s five-yard scoring plunge at the 5:11 mark of the third quarter and Josh McCoy’s subsequent PAT provided for a tie score heading into the fourth period.
Dresden will put its unbeaten record on the line this week when it takes a road trip to Dover to take on Stewart County (1-2), a 23-16 loser to Waverly this past week.
Hodge said the status of Moran (knee) for the contest likely wouldn’t be decided until late in the week.
Versatile skill position player Colter Swafford — who also suffered a knee injury in the Lions’ opener against Westview — might be two weeks away from returning to action, according to the coach. Published in The WCP 9.4.12
Raymer big man in Dresden win