Coaching in an offensive slugfest that stretched over two days is nothing new for head coach Chad Leaphart.
Back in 2015 as head coach at Swansea, he witnessed his team engage in a legendary dual for the ages with Chapin. The 63-60 overtime win by the Eagles, a game which was completed the following day due to bad weather, saw both teams combine for over 15 touchdowns and 800 total yards.
This time, Leaphart was on the winning end of another contest between two high-powered offenses that was completed the following day. With Gilbert’s 62-47 win over Gray Collegiate Academy Saturday at Leonard Price Field, Leaphart picked up his 30th win in the 36th game as head coach of his alma mater.
“It was crazy, it’s one of the most nerve-racking games I’ve ever been a part of,” Leaphart said. “We’re going down the field and scoring, but so were they. It was tit-for-tat the whole night last night. We’re throwing the ball, they’re throwing the ball and so the game’s taking forever. There was a lot of penalties (a combined 28 for 285 yards). We played about a whole game last night and then, had to come back this morning. I’m just proud about how our guys responded.”
By the time the dust settled, an overworked statisticians provided the following numbers:
– 1,254 total yards (670 by Gilbert, 584 by GCA)
– Gilbert QB Jy Tolen (23-30, 358 yards, 4 TDs)
– GCA QB Hunter Helms (17-28, 402 yards, 2 TDs)
– GCA RB K.Z. Adams (148 yds, 5 TDs; 108 receiving yards)
– Gilbert RB Ty Walker (143 yds, 2 TDs)
– Gilbert WR Dre Harris (7 receptions, 156 yards, 2 TDs)
Walker scored a yard out to close out the first half and play in Friday. When the action resumed Saturday, Walker opened up the scoring with a 91-yard touchdown run to extend the War Eagles’ lead to 41-32.
After Gilbert’s defense managed to forced the War Eagles to punt, Tolen found Deandre Harris for a 47-yard touchdown to push the lead to 48-32.
Gray Collegiate answered when Helms completed a screen pass to Adams who scampered 79 yards before he was tackled at the two-yard line. On third down, Omarian Dollison scored from a one-yard out and Helms ran in the two-point conversion to cut the deficit to 48-40 heading into the fourth quarter.
Just 28 seconds into the final stanza, Tolen and Harris connected again for a 52-yard touchdown. With 3:38 left in the game, Dre Cook broke free for a 36-yard touchdown run to given the Indians a 62-40 advantage.
Dollison closed out the scoring with a nine-yard touchdown run, but not before Gray Collegiate was whistled for two unsportsmanlike conduct penalties and a player ejection.
The game featured 29 penalties for 285 yards. The War Eagles were flagged 17 times for 150 yards, while Gilbert received 12 penalties for 135 yards.
Up next for the Indians is a home matchup against Batesburg-Leesville. Gray Collegiate travels to Swansea Friday.
OTHER LEXINGTON COUNTY/TOWN OF IRMO SCORES
Batesburg-Leesville 21, Ridge Springs-Monetta 0
Lexingotn 21, Irmo 6
White Knoll 27, Brookland-Cayce 13
Calhoun Academy 54, Northside Christian 14
Dutch Fork 27, Mallard Creek 27 (tie)
Wagener-Salley 46, Pelion 2
River Bluff 46, Fort Mill 3
Lower Richland 41, Swansea 39
Airport 41, Dreher 7