Wednesday, December 4, 2013
As Yogi Berra would say, “This is like déjà vu all over again.”
Dillon won yet again in the Class AA, Div. I Lower State Championship game, this time pitching its eighth shutout of the season, 14-0 over Timberland last week.
This was Dillon’s fifth shutout in its last six games dating back to Oct. 11. The Wildcats utilized a defense that held the big play Wolves to just 122 yards of total offense.
Dillon, the defending state champs, head to Columbia again to play for the Class AA, Div. I state title on Friday against Fairfield Central at Benedict College.
Timberland fans are left to ponder, “How do you beat these guys?” after falling to 1-7 against the legendary Wildcats.
It’s not Thanksgiving and Black Friday without the annual Dillon – Timberland game. Unfortunately, there’s also Gray Saturday afterwards, with the Wolves wondering what else they could have done to drive a chink into the armor of the vaunted Wildcats football program.
Dillon’s Anthony Blue rushed for 188 yards and a touchdown, outgaining the entire Timberland offense to send the Wildcats to the state title game for the fifth time in the last six years.
In 2011, Timberland pulled off the upset of the New Millennium, downing Dillon 18-15 on its way to the Wolves first football state championship in the school’s history.
On Black Friday, the Wolves stingy defense held up for almost three quarters as goose eggs dominated the scoreboard. But at the 4:46 mark of the third quarter Dillon’s Joe Blue rambled home from 8 yards out to break the ice with the game’s first score.
Anthony Blue capped the scoring with a 43-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to put Dillon on top 14-0.
The Wildcats’ Brick Wall defense took over, forcing three turnovers, including two interceptions to hold Timberland to just 122 yards of offense, outgaining the Wolves 293-122.
Timberland was unable to get its offense untracked as Wolves fullback Bernard “VA” Harmon was held to just 27 yards on 13 carries. Shamel Williams carried the ball twice for 14 yards and Matt Gabel ran the ball six times for nine yards.
The Wolves didn’t fare much better through the air, accounting for just 71 passing yards, the biggest play coming in the fourth quarter when Gabel hit Daniel Robinson across the middle on a 32-yard pass to the Wildcats 17-yard line.
Timberland would advance no further and the drive died on a turnover of downs.
The loss snapped a seven-game Timberland winning streak dating back to the Wolves’ 31-12 loss to Berkeley on Sept. 27.
Timberland closes out the 2013 season with a 10-3 mark and a question that will haunt these Wolves until the start of summer practice in 2014: How do you beat Dillon?
For now, the unsettling answer is, “You don’t.”