Saints get edged in the end

Published 12:00 am Saturday, October 1, 2005

Despite being held to five net yards from scrimmage in the second half, Nansemond-Suffolk Academy narrowly missed out on their upset bid over host Christchurch Friday losing 19-14.

The game was a battle of tough defenses from the start.

NSA got the ball to start, and the two sides traded punts, with each school earning two first downs through the opening quarter.

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The Seahorses looked to be the first to break through early in the second quarter as a 37-yard completion moved the ball into NSA territory.

On the next play from scrimmage though, a Seahorse fumble was recovered by Kelvin Demps on the NSA 44.

Three running plays later, the Saints faced fourth and one from the Seahorse 47.

The fourth down call was go, and Tyler Van Selow took the ball over left for a two-yard gain to keep the drive going.

Demps’ contribution turned to the offensive side two plays later as he broke through the left side of the line, got through the Seahorse secondary and went 35 yards for the game’s first score.

Christchurch responded on their next possession, as fullback Moon Robinson went 60 yards for a touchdown run.

The score remained tied at seven until the fourth quarter. Saint penalties did just as much to stop possible drives as did the Seahorse defense.

After being whistled for only one penalty in the first half, NSA was flagged eight times for 70 yards after halftime.

With seven minutes remaining, Christchurch finished off an 11-play, 38-yard drive with a two-yard scoring run by Delvon Ruffin, putting the Seahorses up 13-7.

The ensuing kick was booted out of bounds. Instead of taking the ball at the 35, NSA coach Terry Crigger chose to have a rekick.

It turned out to be the big play the Saints were waiting for.

Fielding the kick at the 17, Kyle Jett raced up the middle of the field behind his blockers and then darted to the right sideline around his own 35.

Turning the corner on all but one last Seahorse defender, Jett cut back through the middle of the field around the Seahorse 30 and went 83 yards for the NSA touchdown.

Jett then kicked the extra point, giving NSA the advantage just seconds after Christchurch gained their first lead of the game.

Christchurch’s offense was right back on the field however, scoring 10 plays and 5:30 later to retake the lead with under a minute to go, and intercepted an NSA pass as time expired.

The Saints, partly due to long Seahorse drives, and partly due to Jett’s kick return, did not run an offensive play for the first 11 minutes of the fourth quarter.

The next two NSA (2-3, 0-1) games are back in Suffolk. St. Anne’s-Belfield comes to town next Friday and Norfolk Academy is NSA’s homecoming guest on Oct. 14.