Stanfield runs

St. James running back Deondray Stanfield rushed for three touchdowns Friday night.

The St. James High football team is accustomed to lopsided scores and running second-half clocks, just not from a winning perspective.

Following Friday's resounding 42-7 road victory over Georgetown, the Sharks (3-1) prefer the other side of an old-fashioned whipping.

St. James rolled up nearly 400 yards — 353 on the ground — while holding the Bulldogs (1-2) without an offensive touchdown on the night.

The Sharks claimed their third victory of the season, matching the program's total number of wins over the previous three years combined.

"I'm so proud of what these guys are doing, especially for the seniors," said St. James second-year head coach Tommy Norwood. "Three wins is as many as they have had [in their varsity careers]. They've worked hard to turn things around, so it's good to see it paying off for them."

It's not only the fact that the Sharks are off to their best record since a 2-2 start in 2015, the only winning season in program history; it's the way the Sharks dominated — scoring on their first five drives behind two talented senior running backs and a strong offensive line.

"It feels good," said Deondray Stanfield, who rushed for three TDs. "We like to think we represent a new foundation for St. James football."

Stanfield formed a devastating 1-2 punch with backfield mate Malachi Butler, who ran for two TDs. The duo combined for 326 yards and five TDs.

"The offensive line did a great job of blocking for us," Butler said. "No matter who gets the ball, we just try to keep the momentum going."

The Sharks did that so well that they attempted only seven passes. Quarterback Ethan White, also a senior, completed four of seven passes and also ran for a score. After all, it's hard to throw the ball with ground game so effective.

"We like to be a little more balanced than that, but we were picking up 7, 8 yards a carry," Norwood said. "There was no need to throw it."

The Sharks played a near-flawless first half — racking up 20 first downs and making five TD drives — until the final play before halftime.

Leading 35-0 and looking to cap it with a last-second field goal, the Sharks had the kick blocked and Eric Sherrill ran it back as time expired. It was the only score of the game for the Bulldogs, who lost four fumbles and two loss-of-downs.

The Sharks were turnover-free and allowed just over 100 yards of total offense for the Bulldogs. They host Aynor next week before opening Region 6-5A play.

Contact Charles D. Perry at 843-488-7236


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