INDIAN LAND — After starting the season 6-0, Indian Land had lost three games in a row, and it didn't get easier for them Friday against Buford.
Both teams struggled to overcome the weather, ejections and injuries, but in the end, the difference in the Warriors' 23-21 win was one player: Trey Eaves.
Early on, Rondreas Truesdale, not Eaves, looked like he would make the difference for Indian Land. Truesdale already had rushed 10-38 and a two-yard score, but when a Buford defender rolled into his ankle, Eaves stepped to the forefront. Truesdale would only carry the ball 4-19 for the rest of the game, but Eaves picked up the slack and then some. Eaves rushed 23-210 and scored touchdowns of 57 and 45 yards. He also had a 44-yard run that set up Indian Land's final points, a 27-yard Chad Thomas field goal that had the Warriors leading 23-14 with a minute and a half left in the third quarter.
The Yellow Jackets were able to stay in the game despite losing star fullback and linebacker Scott Catledge. Catledge was ejected for kicking an Indian Land defender under the pile in the second quarter. Fortunately for Buford, C.J. Blackmon and a lucky break kept them in the game. Blackmon ran for a first down late in the first half, when he was stripped of the ball. Two Indian Land players and one Buford player had a chance to recover it, when the ball bounced into the hands of James Mackey. The Yellow Jackets lineman raced 30 yards into the end zone to cut Indian Land's lead to 20-14 at the half.
With less than three minutes left and down 23-14, Buford had one last chance, thanks to an Indian Land fumble. Blackmon led the Yellow Jackets down the field, accounting for all the yardage but the last three. Jay Chambers' three-yard run cut the Warrior lead to 23-21. Off Buford's outside kick after two fourth-down stops by Indian Land, the ball bounced straight to the Warriors' Michael Rodriguez, who fell on the ball and ran out the clock for the hard-fought win.
Indian Land 23, Buford 21
IL - 2 yd run Rondreas Truesdale (Chad Thomas kick)
BHS - 16 yd run C.J. Blackmon(Tyler Jenkins kick)
IL - 57 yd run Trey Eaves (kick failed)
IL - 45 yd run Eaves (Thomas kick)
BHS - 30 yd fum rec James Mackey (Jenkins kick)
HV -27 yd FG Chad Thomas
BHS - 3 yd run Jay Chambers (Jenkins kick)
RUSHING - BUFORD: C.J. Blackmon 6-60, Scott Catledge 8-30, Josh Mullens 10-35, James Mackey 1-30, Marcus Brown 3-17, Mikeem McKinney 2-5, Timmy Blackmon 4-1. INDIAN LAND: Trey Eaves 23-210, Rondreas Truesdale 15-49, D.J. Moore 3-5, Manny McCord 2-1.
PASSING - BUFORD: C.J. Blackmon 6-8-83-0-0. INDIAN LAND: Rondreas Truesdale 1-3-14-0-0,
Dalton McGuirt 1-1-(-1)-0-0.
RECEIVING - BUFORD: Mikeem McKinney 4-65, Jay Chambers 2-18. INDIAN LAND: Trey Eaves 2-13.
RECORDS - Indian Land 7-3, 2-3 Region 8-2A; Buford 6-4, 1-4.