A bevy of points early on proved extremely useful late in the game Friday night as the Greenville Red Raiders defeated the York Cougars 42-27 in a second round of the 4A playoff game at Sirrine Stadium.
The victory propels the Red Raiders (11-1) into the third round for a rematch with Greer next Friday.
“We held on, survived and advanced”, Greenville head coach David Crane said. “Thought we played great the first two and a half quarters.”
“There’s only been I think three other teams in school history that have won at least 11 games,” Crane said. “They’ve been playing football here for a hundred years. That’s definitely something to be proud of.”
The Red Raiders got straight to it in those first 30 minutes of the game, attacking the Cougars defense right up the middle. Senior running back Danyaus Williams-Byrd did the bulk of the pounding on the defense as he ran the ball 21 times in the first half for 174 yards and three touchdowns.
He set the tone with a 39-yard run on the second snap of the game, though Greenville wound up missing a field goal on the drive. Williams-Byrd came back on the next possession, bursting through for 26 yards to set up his four-yard touchdown run.
Williams-Byrd added a pair of 11-yard touchdown runs before halftime, when the Red Raiders led 35-7.
The only respite – if you could call it that – the York defense received from Williams-Byrd came when quarterback Davis Beville kept the ball for a run or to throw a pass. Beville had runs of 18 and 49 yards in the first half and a 40-yarder early in the second half. He ran for 132 yards.
Beville also threw for 122 yards and three touchdowns – a 31-yarder to Ty Hellams and nine and 13-yard scores to Mack Braswell.
Williams-Byrd snared two key passes in the game. In the final minute of the first half, when Greenville appeared to be settling for a three-touchdown lead, he caught a 21-yard pass from freshman Terrence Gist, setting up one of his 11-yard scoring runs.
Late in the game York cut Greenville’s lead to 42-27. La’Darius Allison scored for the Cougars on a 70 yard run. J. T. Sanders added an eight yard run for a score, and Tanner McKinney passed to Sanders on a 42-yard play for the final touchdown.
Allison led York’s ground game with 107 yards on five carries. Sanders added 45 on 16 tries. McKinney completed 16 of 30 passesd for 208 yards.
The Greenville News contributed
G - Danyaus William-Byrd 4 run (Jack Henegan kick) 6:21
G - Danyaus Williams-Byrd 11 run (Jack Henegan kick) 2:09
G - Ty Hellams 31 pass from Davis Beville (kick failed) 10:26
G - Ty Hellams 9 pass from Davis Beville (Barrett Staunton run) 6:07
Y - J. T. Sanders 3 run (Beck Johnson kick) 2:49
G - Danyaus Williams-Byrd 10 run (Jack Henegan kick) 0:39
Mack Braswell 13 pass from Davis Beville (Jack Henegan kick) 10:44
Y - La’Darius Allsion 70 run (kick failed) 7:37
Y - J. T. Sanders 8 run (Beck Johnson kick) 11:24
Y - J. T. Sanders 42 pass from Tanner McKinney (Beck Johnston kick) 6:40
RUSHING- York: La’Darius Allison 5-107, J. T. Sanders 16-45, Stephen Oglesby 7-13, Shaq Harris 1-8, Tanner McKinney 1-1; Greenville - Danyaus Williams 37-192, Davis Beville 10-131, Colin Wakefield 3-37.
PASSING - York: Tanner McKinney 16-30-3-208; Greenville: Davis Beville 7-15-0-122, Tarence Ghist 1-1-1-18.
RECEIVING - York: La’Darius Allison 5-68, Khalil Ellis 4-53, J. T. Sanders 1-42, Ethan Mitchell 3-26, Zion Walker 1-9, Jaquarius Guinn 1-8, Stephen Oglesby 1-2; Greenville: Mack Braswell 3-47, Ty Hellams 2-40, Danyaus Williams 2-28, Caleb Krail 1-25.