Ridge View’s rebuilding project took another step forward Tuesday night.
D’Marco Zeigler came off the bench and threw two second-half touchdown passes and the Blazer defense forced five turnovers in defeating Dutch Fork 28-21 in the Region 4-4A opener for teams. It was Ridge View’s first win over Dutch Fork since 2009.
Zeigler, who came in for an injured Jaylen Nelson, threw touchdown passes to Cam Napper on consecutive possessions in the third quarter to give Ridge View a 28-14 lead. Ridge View coach Perry Parks said Nelson cracked his collarbone and will be out at least a month.
Dutch Fork cut it to 28-21 on Jesse Ragin’s 8-yard TD with 2:01 left. The Silver Foxes forced a punt on Ridge View’s next possession and got the ball back with 1:30 left. But the Blazers’ D’Ondray Bryson-Ashford picked off Caleb Clark for the second time to seal the victory.
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Clark, who came in for starter Cole Douglas on and off during the second half, was 7-of-14 for 155 yards and a touchdown, but was picked off four times.
With the score tied at 14 in the third quarter, Dutch Fork turned the ball over on back-to-back drives, and the Blazers turned them into touchdowns each time to grab a 28-14 lead. All five of the Silver Foxes’ turnovers came in the second half.
D’Marco Zeigler: Ridge View quarterback seemed to spark Blazers when he was inserted in the lineup. Keenan transfer was just 4-of-12 for 52 yards, but three went for touchdowns.
Ali Kelley: Running back was the Blazers’ workhorse on the ground and rushed for 102 yards on 18 carries.
5: Number of quarterbacks combined used by both teams, and also number of Dutch Fork turnovers in the game.
4: Number of wins for Ridge View this season. Blazers haven’t won more than six in a season since 2012 and haven’t had a winning season since 2007.
THEY SAID IT
“I was telling the kids the only one way to get respect in high school football is to earn it. You got to beat the Goose Creeks, you got to beat the Dutch Forks, and people still won’t believe you. You got to do it week in and week out and have fun.” – Ridge View coach Perry Parks
“Losing Jaylen was a great loss because he is an emotional leader, so we had to step up for him tonight.” – Ridge View QB D’Marco Zeigler
“We have been preaching new era all year and this win said it for us. We are 4-3 and now we do what we got to do to beat Westwood.” – Ridge View defensive back D’Ondray Bryson-Ashford
HOW THEY SCORED
RV – Nelson 1 run (Lawyer kick), 11:42
DF – Douglas 15 run (Williams kick), 11:17
RV – Brown 6 pass from Zeigler (Lawyer kick), 3:26
DF – Connor 71 pass from Clark (Williams kick), 9:47
RV – Napper 11 pass from Zeigler (Lawyer kick), 4:03
RV – Napper 10 pass from Zeigler (Lawyer kick), 0:16
DF – Ragin 8 run (Williams kick), 2:01
Rushing: DF: Douglas 13-43, Jones 11-50, Ragin 2-15, Connor 2-12. RV: Kelley 18-102, Brown 16-43, Zeigler 3-7 Nelson 6-19
Passing: DF: Clark 7-14-4 155, Douglas 2-8-0 48. RV: Zeigler 4-12-0 52, Nelson 3-6-0 64.
Receiving: DF: DeBoer 6-115, Connor 2-71, Scott 1-17. RV: Napper 3-39, High 1-33, McCrae 1-25, Carter 1-13, Brown 1-6.