High School Football

Hemingway blanks Carvers Bay

With the way Hemingway's defense has played this season, the Tigers haven't needed to ask a lot of their offense in order to win games.

It was the same story line Friday night against Carvers Bay.

Hemingway didn't score its first points until 3:38 remained in the fourth quarter, but that was more than enough as the Tigers pitched their fourth shutout in five games.

After tacking on a second late touchdown, Hemingway celebrated a 12-0 win at home over Carvers Bay in regional play.

"It wasn't the prettiest thing in the world, but we gutted it out and found a way to win in the end," Tigers coach Ken Cribb said. "Anybody that doesn't know about these games here [against] Carvers Bay, every time we play ... they're always tough, hard, physical."

This game was all of those things. The teams combined for 27 penalties totaling more than 200 yards, and they took their turns punting back and forth for most of the evening - until Hemingway finally broke through.

Tigers junior Rico Waterman intercepted Carvers Bay quarterback Desmond Grate and gave Hemingway possession at the Bears' 40-yard line.

An 18-yard run by senior Shakeel Booker moved the chains - and a late-hit personal foul penalty against the Bears along the sideline moved the Tigers even closer.

On third-and-11 from the Carvers Bay 12, Tigers senior Justin Pressley found junior Jabril Soloman in the back corner of the end zone for Hemingway's go-ahead touchdown.

The Tigers (5-0) would miss the extra point, but it wouldn't matter because the Hemingway defense has allowed only six points all season - and it wasn't going to give in Friday night.

"They've been outstanding," Cribb said. "They bend a little bit but don't break."

Indeed, Carvers Bay (3-3) had its best scoring opportunities early in the game, driving to Hemingway's 20-yard line on its first possession before falling short on fourth down and then reaching the Hemingway 10 on their next drive before missing a short field goal.

"It's tough. We've lost some tough ones down the stretch," Carvers Bay coach Nate Thompson said. "We've just got to learn how to finish right now. We haven't learned how to finish yet. We've got a long way to go."

After taking the lead, Hemingway got the ball back on an interception by senior Rayshawn Heyward and later added to its lead with a 27-yard touchdown run by junior LaMichael Pushia.

Senior Quae'Shawn Brockington had a game-high 70 rushing yards in 11 carries for the Bears.

Meanwhile, Carvers Bay had a scary moment when Grate had to be carried off the field on a stretcher late in the fourth quarter, while playing defense.

"He got the wind knocked out of him. He got a little dizzy by it," Thompson said. "... They're going to take him to get him checked and make sure he's OK."