Fort Dorchester scored 28 unanswered points to erase a 21-point deficit and beat West Ashley, 28-21, in a wild game at Wildcat Stadium on Friday.
“We played with tremendous effort tonight,” said West Ashley coach Bobby Marion. “We just didn’t play a smart second half.”
The Wildcats took a 7-0 lead when tailback Marquize Jenkins scored from 3 yards with 8:24 left in the first quarter. In the second quarter, quarterback Pedro Manigault scored on a 1-yard run and then connected with junior Anthony Vincelli on a 32-yard touchdown to give West Ashley a 21-0 lead.
Vincelli finished the night with seven catches for 123 yards. Manigault hit 13 of 24 passes for 181 yards.
Fort Dorchester scored with 46 seconds left in the half to make it 21-6 on Matt Murray’s 1-yard run.
“That touchdown made a huge difference in the game,” said Marion. “It gave them momentum going into halftime.”
The Patriots tied the game early in the fourth quarter when, taking over at the Wildcat 40 after a Vincelli fumble, they went the distance in six plays with Murray going in from 18 yards for the score with 9:30 left in the game.
Then, with 6:55 left, Vincelli, under center after replacing a shaken Manigault, lost the ball on third and eight to give the Patriots a first down at the Wildcat 40. Senior tailback Nahshon Cyrus darted up the middle from 30 yards to put Fort Dorchester up for good 28-21. Cyrus led all rushers with 104 yards on 14 carries. Patriot QB Kobe Garrett had 98 yards on 17 carries
Things got even worse for West Ashley on the ensuing kickoff. Bobby Ruff fumbled the short kick and the Patriots recovered the ball. Ruff was injured on the play, and the game was halted for 30 minutes while Ruff was attended to on the field. The linebacker suffered an apparent neck injury. Details regarding the extent of his injury were not available.
The Wildcats then held the Patriots and had one last gasp. Taking over at their own 6 with 2:35 to go in the game, West Ashley drove to the Patriot 12-yard line in 15 plays. With three seconds to go and facing fourth down, Manigault tossed the ball to Jenkins for an apparent sweep right. Jenkins stopped and threw back across the field to Manigault, but the ball was knocked away as time expired.
Fort Dorchester 0 6 0 22—28
West Ashley 7 14 0 0—21
WA — Marquize Jenkins 3 run (Caroline Cashion kick)
WA — Pedro Manigault 1 run (Cashion kick)
WA — Anthony Vincelli 32 pass from Manigault (Cashion kick)
FD — Matt Murray 1 run (pass failed)
FD — Kobe Garrett 7 run (Garrett run)
FD — Murray 18 run (Riley Rozanski kick)
FD — Nahshon Cyrus 30 run (Rozanski kick)