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Prep VISAA D-III Football Semifinals: Fredericksburg Christian reaches title game
GRIFFIS RACES TO 102
YARDS IN FCS VICTORY
YARDS IN FCS VICTORY
BY JUSTIN RICE
THE FREE LANCE–STAR
NORFOLK—A year after Fredericksburg Christian’s football team could do no right in a state semifinal defeat, the Eagles found some measure of redemption with a near-perfect effort.
The Eagles (9–1) cruised past Norfolk Christian (8–3) on Saturday, bolting to a 21–0 first-quarter lead and riding their strong running game to an easy 35–0 win in the VISAA Division 3 state semifinals. Fredericksburg Christian will play at Virginia Episcopal next Saturday in the state championship, seeking the first state title in the program’s brief four-year history.
“We had a good practice and we prepared well,” Eagles offensive tackle A.J. Addison said. “We stayed focused all week, and now we’ve got one more game to go. We’ve got to finish.”
In last year’s state semifinal, North Cross put up 21 points in the second quarter and pulled away in the second half, as the Eagles paid the price for miscues and penalties in a 43–13 defeat.
That was not the case against Norfolk Christian on Saturday.
Hunter Griffis had an 11-yard scoring run, Cody Goode crossed the goal line on a 40-yarder and quarterback Brett Barham connected with Elijah McCain on a 41-yard strike to make it 21–0 before the first quarter was over.
And after a scoreless second period, FCS opened the third with an impressive 10-play, time-sucking drive that Griffis capped with a four-yard scoring run. He added a third touchdown in the fourth quarter.
Fredericksburg Christian had 286 rushing yards and—even with a rash of illegal procedure penalties that led to a slew of first-and-15s—seemed able to run at will against the Ambassadors.
“We had to go to war,” Griffis said. “We had to get done what we had to get done. The holes were there; the line blocked great.”
Griffis finished with 102 yards on 17 carries, and Aaron Alexander had 109 yards on 11 totes. And now it’s on to the state championship game, a step beyond where FCS was able to land last fall.
“We’ve wanted this since last year,” Alexander said. “This is what we went to practice for all this year, from January to two-a-days. It’s all about this next week.”
Fred. Christian 21 0 7 7 — 35
Norfolk Christian 0 0 0 0 — 0
FCS-H. Griffis 11-yard run (G. Sala kick)
FCS-C. Goode 40-yard run (G. Sala kick)
FCS-E. McCain 41-yard pass from B. Barham (G. Sala kick)
FCS-H. Griffis 4-yard run (G. Sala kick)
FCS-H. Griffis 12-yard run (G. Sala kick)
First downs 13 10
Rushing yardage 42-286 22-47
Passing yardage 51 105
Passes 2-3-0 13-22-2
Punts-Avg. 5-37.4 4-43.3
Fumbles-lost 0-0 4-1
Penalties-yards 12-83 3-21
Rushing: Norfolk Christian—Kevin Hicks 11-46; George Wahee 2-6; Khalil McGlone 7-4; C.J. Epps 2-(-9). Fredericksburg Christian—Aaron Alexander 11-109; Hunter Griffis 17-102, 3TD; Cody Goode 3-48, TD; Landon Sharp 5-21; Brandon Chenault 1-3; Ben Sizemore 3-3; Chris Barlow 1-2; Bret Barham 1-(-2).
Passing: Norfolk Christian—Khalil McGlone 13-22-2 105. Fredericksburg Christian—Bret Barham 2-3-0 51, TD.
Receiving: Norfolk Christian—George Wahee 6-25; C.J. Epps 1-21; Nick Early 1-21; Kevin Hicks 1-17; Jordan McFarlane 3-16; J.T. Wahee 1-5. Fredericksburg Christian—Elijah McCain 1-41, TD; Aaron Alexander 1-10.
Justin Rice: 540/368-5045