BY DUSTIN DUNCAN
FOR THE OBSERVER
Buster Daniel and the Lee-Scott Warriors passed another test Friday night, defeating Glenwood for the second year in a row, 35-16.
Lee-Scott running back George Meyers rushed 83 yards on 15 carries and scored twice to lead the Warriors to an AISA AAA victory to remain undefeated.
Lee-Scott head coach Daniel knew his team would be in for a fight Friday night facing off against one of the program’s biggest rivals.
“We have to play all four quarters tonight,” Daniel said. “You can’t play two quarters against a team like that and expect to win.”
While Lee-Scott did get the win convincingly, Glenwood was able to punch the ball into the endzone more than once against a Warrior defense that hadn’t allowed a touchdown all season.
After losing starting running back JT Banks on the first play of the game, Glenwood head coach Ryan Nelson was forced to lean more heavily on junior quarterback Dallas Crow to move the ball through the air and with his legs.
Crow responded by carrying the ball 13 times for 88 yards and a touchdown. Through the air, Crow completed 9-of-20 passes for 181 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions.
“When you lose your starting running back, you have to find other ways to move the football,” Nelson said. “We just took what they gave us. It just wasn’t enough.”
The scoring started late in the first quarter after each defense looked stiff. A 23-yard run by Lee-Scott quarterback Ryan Dearing set up a 5-yard score by Meyers with 1:47 left in the first quarter.
Glenwood responded immediately with a 63-yard connection from Crow to senior running back Aaron Burton to tie the game at seven.
The Gators were poised to pull ahead after getting the ball back quickly, but Crow was intercepted by Quinn Denson near midfield. Five plays later, Dearing hit running back Andrew Hahn for a 37-yard touchdown, putting Lee-Scott up 14-7. Glenwood would add a field goal to send the rivalry game to the half with Lee-Scott up 14-10.
Early in the second half, Dearing would injure his foot on a quarterback keeper and be replaced by backup Pelzer Reaves. The next play after Dearing’s injury saw Hahn burst through the Glenwood defense for 56 yards, leading to a 9-yard touchdown run by running back Jonathan Meyers. Leading 21-10, Lee-Scott never looked back.
Dearing would come back into the game on the next possession, but he reinjured his foot and Daniel decided it was best to keep him on the sideline.
“We think he’s going to be fine,” Daniel said. “We kept him out more for caution than anything.”
Daniel praised Reaves for coming into an important game and executing properly.
“We practice with him every day, too,” he said. “He’s always ready to take it over and run with it.”
Just like earlier in the third quarter, Lee-Scott had a big play the following snap after Dearing left the game. This time, Meyers tight-roped the sideline and drove toward the pylon for his second score of the night, putting Lee-Scott up 28-10.
Crow would lead his offense down the field through a mix of passes and runs, eventually scoring on a 17-yard run. The Gators’ comeback attempt would officially end when Miles Zachry would intercept Crow on a long pass to the red zone.
Lee-Scott wide receiver Jake White put the exclamation point on the night, taking the direct snap 71 yards for a touchdown with 20 seconds left in the game. White would finish the night with 107 yards on seven carries, and one catch for 13 yards.
Daniel said beating Glenwood is big for Lee-Scott as a school and football program, but there is more work to do.
“We have to take it one game at a time,” he said. “We can’t worry about being undefeated — we just have to keep playing Lee-Scott football.”
Nelson is looking forward to getting Glenwood back to practice and a bye week to potentially nurse a few injuries.
“We’ve been hurt by the injury bug,” he said. “That’s the third starter we’ve lost in the past three weeks. But I’m not going to make any excuses. They played a great game and they beat us. We have to go back to the drawing board and get better.”
Nelson said his team won’t get caught up in the drama of a rivalry game between Lee-Scott and Glenwood. He said his team is focusing on getting better.
“Our ultimate goal is to win the last one,” he said. “We go into a bye week next and we’ll be better at a lot of things, and we’ll be ready for the second half of the season.”
Glenwood does have a bye week before heading to Montgomery to play Valiant Cross Academy on Sept. 30. Lee-Scott heads to Macon East Montgomery Academy — who is also undefeated and coming off a bye — on Sept. 30.