Barons grab second

Published 12:00 am Saturday, November 5, 2005

GATESVILLE – It was just what the doctor ordered.

Despite playing in a game marred by a total of 33 yellow hankies resulting in a combined 234 yards worth of penalties, Gates County secured the Three Rivers Conference’s North Division number two seed here last night (Friday) where the Red Barons celebrated a 38-8 homecoming win over Perquimans County.

Gates County (5-6 overall and 3-5 in league play) will await today’s announcement of the NCHSAA’s Class 1-A state playoff pairings. As a number two seed, the Red Barons stand a better chance of hosting a first-round play-off game.

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Despite a flag-happy night from the officials (during one stretch in the 4th quarter there were nine penalties over just 11 plays), Gates County was able to maintain offensive consistency.

The Red Barons scored on their first three possessions, en route to building a 19-8 halftime lead.

Two of those scores came in surprising fashion, both via the aerial route as the run-oriented ‘Barons caught the visiting Pirates off-guard as quarterback Graylon Boone fired a pair of TD passes (37 yards to Derrick Eason on the final play of the first quarter followed by a twice-tipped ball that wound-up in the hands of Danny Hobbs in the endzone at the 7:22 mark of the 2nd period).

Those two TD aerials coupled with Ralphael Eason’s two-yard TD run just prior to the midway mark of the 1st quarter staked the ‘Barons to its halftime cushion.

That lead increased on the opening possession of the second half where Gates County drove 68 yards in just six plays capped by R. Eason’s 10-yard TD jaunt where he ran over three, would-be tacklers on his way to paydirt. R. Eason had 63 of his game-high 167 rushing yards on that drive.

Now leading 25-8, the Red Barons put the game in the hands of their defense, a unit that not only kept the Pirates out of the endzone over the final three quarters, but set-up their club’s final two scores.

Sparked by Boone’s 31-yard interception return, GCHS extended their lead to 32-8 just before the midpoint of the 4th quarter where D. Eason finished a short two-play, 14-yard drive with his three-yard run to paydirt.

A high snap on a Perquimans punt set-up the ‘Barons final score. Sterling Frazier scooped up that miscue and rumbled to the Perquimans 11 yardline. Six plays and two penalties later, reserve running back DeAndre Johnson darted in from three yards out to round-out the scoring.

GCHS amassed 424 yards of total offense, 302 of which came on the ground. D. Eason chipped in 82 rushing yards on 12 carries.

Perquimans totaled 147 yards (142 on the ground).