CHESTER — Jemarcus Moore had an emphatic answer to getting snubbed from a nomination to the North-South All-Star game, which announced rosters this week.
Moore, a defensive back and receiver, responded with an outstanding overall performance. He provided a major spark in Chesters 49-34 victory over Emerald in the opening round of the Class-AAA state playoffs Friday night at Chester Stadium.
Moore had five catches for 82 yards and two touchdowns on offense; a 65-yard kickoff return; 10 tackles, two pass break-ups, and the clinching interception.
Yes, it motivated me, said a usually soft-spoken Moore, a four-year starter. I just had the feeling that I would return that kick; we really needed that.
The kickoff return, which Moore fielded at the 5during the third quarter, came immediately after the Vikings tied the score at 28, erasing what once was a 14-point, first-half deficit.
Moore, who had a 96-yard kickoff return to spark a victory over Union the previous week, used his blockers for a 65-yard return to the Emerald 35-yard line.
Emerald, based in Greenwood County, moved the ball methodically throughout the contest, but the Cyclones defense forced a 1-yard punt on the first possession of the fourth quarter.
Running back Lorenzo White, who gained 96 yards, scored for the third time on a 5-yard run, putting Chester in control 42-28 with 7 minutes, 21 seconds remaining.
Chester (7-4) will host Greenville, which defeated Chapin, next Friday night. Emerald ends the season at 7-4.
Chester 49, Emerald 34
C Tommy Sanders 17-yard pass to Jemarcus Moore (Matt Kennedy kick)
C Sanders 27-yard pass to Quan Caldwell (Kennedy kick)
E Oshamar Abercrombie 6-yard run (kick failed)
C White 4-yard run (Kennedy kick)
E Abercrombie 13-yard run (kick failed)
C White 21-yard run (Kennedy kick)
E Logan Yates 29-yard pass to Volodimer Hackett (Will Tommie kick)
C Yates 17-yard pass to Hackett (Tommie kick)
C Sanders 3-yard run (Kennedy kick)
C White 5-yard run (Kennedy kick)
E Yates 9-yard pass to Daniel Adams (kick failed)
C Sanders 29-yard pass to Jemarcus Moore (Kennedy kick)
RUSHING Chester: Lorenzo White 19-96, Derrell Rambert 12-85, Jemarcus Moore 2-1, Tommy Sanders 10-(-3), Quan Caldwell 1-12. Emerald: Oshamar Abercrombie 20-88, AJ Grant 2-14, Devonte Marshall 1-1, QuDarius Neal 10-47, Logan Yates 8-22, Titus Williams 4-9, Volodimer Hackett 1-16.
PASSING Chester: Tommy Sanders 10-19-0-184, Quan Caldwell 0-1-0-0. Emerald: Keiston Smith 11-20-2-145, Jumaane Ryans 0-1-0-0.
RECEIVING Chester: Melvin Jackson 2-36, Jemarcus Moore 5-82, Derrell Rambert 1-17, Quan Caldwell 3-49. Emerald: Volodimer Hackett 5-79, Devonte Marshall 1-2, Jumaane Ryans 1-23, QuDarius Neal 2-38, Daniel Adams 2-13.
RECORDS Chester 7-4, Emerald 7-4.