Dragons use 4th quarter rally to avoid Redmen upset bid

Published 8:52 pm Saturday, September 17, 2022

Fairland Dragons’ running back Zion Martin (26) is surrounded by Rock Hill Redmen defenders Anthony Stamper (14), Levi Jiles (30) and Brayden Adams (5). Fairland rallied to win 34-27. (Robert S. Stevens/The Gold Studio of Ironton)

By Jim Walker



PEDRO — The Rock Hill Redmen were good. Unfortunatley for them, the Fairland Dragons were just a little more gooder.

OK, so it’s improper grammar but it doesn’t change the fact Fairland and Rock Hill hooked up in a tough battle that saw the Dragons make a couple of big plays in the fourth quarter to avoid a major upset and beat the Redmen 34-27 in an Ohio Valley Conference game on Friday.

“We played well enough to win and we put ourselves in position to possibly win, but we made a couple of mistakes and Fairland is a very good team with a lot of great skill players who just made the plays,” said Redmen coach Mark Lutz.

Rock Hill (2-3, 0-2) had taken a 27-20 lead on a 2-yard run by Skyler Kidd late in the third quarter.

With the game tied, the Redmen came out in the second half and put together a 62-yard, 15-play drive that ate up all but 2:38 of the quarter.

Fairland (4-1, 1-1) went 52 yards in 6 plays as the drive spilled over into the fourth quarter.

A 10-yard pass from Peyton Jackson to Brycen Hunt went for 10 yards to the Redmen 31 and Hunt ran a wheel route on the next play and was wide open for a 31-yard touchdown reception and the game was tied with 11:46 to play.

Rock Hill drove to the Fairland 17 only to fumble the ball and the Dragons recovered.

Zion Martin had a 53-yard run on the ensuing play to the Rock Hill 30 but a penalty on the play added 15 yards to the 15.

Kam Kitts ran 8 yards to the 7 and then finished off the quick drive on the next play. Gabe Polcyn’s conversion kick put the Dragons up 34-27 with 3:24 to play.

Rock Hill tried to put together another scoring drive and got to the Dragons’ 45. But two incomplete passes on third and fourth downs ended any comeback hopes.

The Dragons took a 7-0 lead 5 plays into the game as Jackson hit Kitts on a 32-yard scoring pass.

Rock Hill answered with a 64-yard, 11-play drive capped by Levi Jiles’ 6-yard TD run with 2:05 on the clock.

Fairland came right back in just 3 players keyed by a 41-yard pass to Hunt that set up a 3-yard scoring run by Quentin Cremeans and it was 13-7 with just 30 seconds left in the first quarter.

Despite a holding penalty that had the Redmen starting their next drive first-and-22 on their own 29, they went the distance in 8 plays as quarterback Brayden Adams scored on a 1-yard run and it was 13-all with 7:27 to go in the half.

Fairland got a 52-yard kickoff return by Kitts to the Rock Hill 32 and Jackson threw a middle screen to Martin who went the distance for the go-ahead score and it was 20-13 with 7:05 on the clock.

But Rock Hill answered yet again with an 82-yard, 8-play march ignited by Kordell French’s 32-yard run. Jiles ran the final yard as Rock Hill tied the game with 1:22 left in the half.

Fairland finished with 312 total yards due mainly to Jackson who was 9-of-13 for 192 yards and 3 touchdowns.

Martin ran 5 times for 68 yards and Kitts carried 5 times for 55 yards as they Dragons finished with 120 yards rushing. Hunt caught 6 passes for 109 yards and Kitts had 2 grabs for 51 yards.

Rock Hill controlled the clock with 47 rushes for 260 yards while Adams was 4-of-8 passing for 47 yards.

Jiles ran 21 times for 142 yards — both career highs — and scored 2 touchdowns. French ran 10 times for 85 yards.

Anthony Stamper had 29 yards on 2 catches for the Redmen.

In a rare oddity, neither team punted.

Next Friday, Rock Hill visits South Point and Fairland goes to Gallipolis.

Fairland          13    7     0     14    =     34

Rock Hill       7     13    7     0     =     27

First Quarter

Fa — Kam Kitts 32 pass from Peyton Jackson (Game Polcyn kick) 9:26

RH — Levi Jiles 6 run (Hazley Matthews kick) 2:05

Fa — Quentin Cremeans 3 run (kick failed) 0:30

Second Quarter

RH — Brayden Adams 1 run (kick failed) 7:27

Fa — Zion Martin 32 pass from Peyton Jackson (Gabe Polcyn kick) 7:05

RH — Levi Jiles 1 run (Hazley Matthews kick) 1:22

Third Quarter

RH — Skyler Kidd (2 run (Hazley Matthews kick) 2:38

Fourth Quarter

Fa — Brycen Hunt 31 pass from Peyton Jackson (Gabe Polcyn kick) 11:46

Fa — Kam Kitts 7 run (Gabe Polcyn kick) 3:24


Fa    RH

First downs     12    16

Rushes-yards  12-120    47-260

Passing yards  193  47

Total yards     312  307

Cmp-Att-Int    9-13-0     4-8-0

Fumbles-lost   0-0  1-1

Penalties-yards       4-29 2-27

Punts-average 00.0 00.0


Individual Leaders

RUSHING–Fairland: Zion Martin 5-68, Kam Kitts 5-55, Quentin Cremeans 1-3, team 1-minus 6; Rock Hill: Levi Jies 21-142 2TD, Kordell French 10-85, Skyler Kidd 2-9 2TD, Anthony Stamper 4-10, Brock Friend 2-5, Brayden Adams 5-3, Chase Delong 5-9.

PASSING–Fairland: Peyton Jackson 9-13-0 192 3TD; Rock Hill: Brayden Adams 4-8-0 47.

RECEIVING–Fairland: Brycen Hunt 6-109 TD, Kam Kitts 2-51 TD, Zion Martin 1-32 TD; Rock Hill: Anthony Stamper 2-29, Levi Jiles 1-14, Kordell French 1-4.