Nesbitt continues rampage, Greer defense has big night

Greer beats Union 41-28 in

By Jim Fair, Editor
Published on Friday, September 7, 2012

Enlarge photo

Alex Waters, Greer's outstanding offensive lineman, jumps over a Union player to charge downfield looking for players to move out of the way. 

Julie McCombs

Alex Waters, Greer's outstanding offensive lineman, jumps over a Union player to charge downfield looking for players to move out of the way. 

Throw an offer of a piece of meat to the defense and they will chew it up as fast as you can say Quez Nesbitt.

“Coach (Bob) Massullo told the defensive line if we got five sacks he would take us out for a steak,” John Hicks, senior linebacker, said. Hicks got five sacks alone, including 18 tackles, 10 assists and one tackle for loss. Defensive linemen Tim Ballenger returned an interception 10 yards for a touchdown and Ty Campbell recovered a Union fumble at the 15 late in the game to preserve Greer’s cushion.

Greer beat Union tonight, 41-28, at Union County Stadium for its second straight away win to improve to 2-1. Union dropped to 1-2. Greer also keeps the mythical “Jacket Bowl” for the second straight year by beating Union.

Greer plays Greenville at Sirrine Stadium next Friday. 

Nesbitt gained 178 yards and scored three touchdowns on 22 carries. As if to put an exclamation point on the victory, Nesbitt broke free for a 65-yard touchdown run with 3:31 left in the game to give Greer a three touchdown lead. Two Union players were angling for a crushing tackle, but Nesbitt juked one so convincingly the defender fell backwards onto the ground and the other was turned completely around and was running away from Nesbitt at the end of the play.

“The defense got us some big momentum, Quez ran well and (Josh) Gentry had a big game, although the stats won’t show it. He threw well and most of his missed passes were catchable,” Greer Head Coach Will Young said.

Gentry scored on a 50-yard run 23 seconds after Union built a 14-0 lead. Malek Johnson returned the kickoff 30 yards to the 50 and Gentry blasted through the line, veered right and outraced Union defenders into the end zone.

“Coach Ab (Jay Abercrombie, offensive coordinator) told me I was going to be running the ball more,” Gentry said. “On that touchdown we pulled the guard and tackle and they opened a big hole for me. They did a great job tonight.”

“One of the things you can’t have is a one-play drive,” Union head coach Steve Taneyhill said. “We have got to get better after this game.”

Hicks could have easily been mistaken as Union’s 12th man on offense but in a different uniform. He was in the backfield frequently and was like a traffic cop directing Greer’s other defenders to the ball carrier.

“We knew the quarterback was going to run. My job was to contain the quarterback and force him inside,” Hicks said. Hicks, who has had a history of shoulder stingers, took some hits tonight that showed him at times with one arm dangling.

Ballenger said he was also staying at home when he played the screen pass perfectly. “I watched a lot of film and knew when (QB Keiston Smith) was going to throw the screen. When the pass was coming to me the only thing on my mind was to score. I didn’t even think of not catching it.”

Ballenger was matter-of-fact when he described the play after the game. “Big time players make big time plays,” he said.

Smith passed for 302 yards and four touchdowns to lead Union.

Union had pulled to within 21-26 with 8:18 remaining in the fourth quarter when Kaylay Jones scored on a 30-yard pass play from Smith.

“We were in the huddle before that play praying for a fumble,” Campbell said. “It was a fumbled snap and I fell on the ball. I wasn’t afraid of it being taken away because my own player was on top of me.”

Nesbitt scored on runs of 34-, 2-, and 65-yard runs.

Union built its 14 point lead on two Smith touchdown passes, an 8-yard completion to T.J. Foster with 8:33 left in the first quarter and a 24-yard scoring strike to Kalay Jones early in the second period.

Greer had Union County on its heels and scored two more touchdowns in a 17 second span late in the second quarter. Nesbitt, who Union thought it had bottled up, escaped for a 4-run blast through the middle for a 20-14 lead.

Josh Cooke’s short kickoff apparently confused Union County and Greer recovered the ball for possession and first down at the 34. Following an incomplete pass Nesbitt took the hand off and sprinted past Union’s defense for the final score of the half.

Centers, who made his first 13 PATs as a starter this sophomore season, missed his first PAT when it went wide left and didn’t get the height to go over the goalpost after Nesbitt’s 4-yard run.

SCORING SUMMARY

Greer

0

26

0

15

41

Union County

7

7

7

7

28

 First Quarter

8:33. Union County: T.J. Foster 8 pass from Keiston Smith. (Brandon Shetley kick), 7-0.

Second Quarter

10:35. Union Co.: Kalay Jones 24 pass from Smith (Shetley kick). 14-0.

10:12. Greer: Greer: Josh Gentry 50 run (Thomas Center kick). 14-7.

8:42. Greer: Tim Ballenger 10 interception return (Center kick). 14-14

3:35. Greer: Emmanuel Kelly 4 run (Center kick failed). 14-20.

3:18. Greer: Nesbitt 34 run (Gentry pass incomplete) 14-26.

Third Quarter

:23.7. Union Co.: Jones 30 pass from Smith (Shetley kick). 21-26

Fourth Quarter

7:37. Greer: Nesbitt 2 run (Gentry pass to Corbin). 21-34.

3:13. Greer: Nesbitt 65 run (Center kick). 21-41.

29.2. Union: T.J. Foster 23 pass from Smith. (Shetley kick). 28-41

TEAM STATISTICS

 

GREER

UNION COUNTY

First downs

14

24

Rushes / yards (net)

32/279

36/76

Passing yards (net)

27

302

Passes – Att./Comp./Int.

12 / 3 / 0

37 / 22 /1

Total offensive plays /yards

49 / 306

73 / 378

Fumble returns / yards

0 / 0

0 / 0

Punt returns / yards

0 / 0

6/73

Kickoff returns / yards

4 /40

 

Interception returns / yards

1 / 10

0 / 0

Punts / number / average

4 / 41.8

4 / 33.5

Fumbles / lost

1 / 1

1 / 1

Penalties / yards

6 / 54

3 / 22

Possession time

18:27

29:33

INDIVIDUAL LEADERS

RUSHING

GREER

 

Attempts

Net

Touchdowns

Longest run

Average

Nesbitt

22

178

3

65

8.1

Gentry

13

97

1

51

7.5

Kelly

1

4

1

4

4.0

Team

1

0

0

0

0

Total

37

279

5

 

7.5

UNION COUNTY

 

Attempts

Net

Touchdowns

Longest run

Average

Davis

12

51

0

13

4.25

Brown

7

28

0

29

4.0

Booker

1

0

0

0

0.0

Smith

16

-3

0

7

0.0

Total

36

75

0

0

2.08

PASSING
GREER

 

Attempts

Complete

Intercepted

Yards

TDs

Longest

Gentry

11

3

0

27

0

15

Team

1

0

0

0

0

0

Total

12

3

0

27

0

15

UNION COUNTY

K. Smith

37

22

1

302

4

30

Total

37

22

1

302

4

30

RECEIVING

GREER

 

Number

Yards

Touchdowns

Longest

Kelly

2

17

0

15

Woods

1

10

0

10

Total

2

17

0

15

UNION COUNTY

 

Number

Yards

Touchdowns

Longest

Jones

8

144

2

30

Foster

4

61

1

27

Booker

4

37

0

16

Ruth

3

32

0

13

Total

19

274

3

30

PUNTING

GREER

 

Punts

Yards

Average

Touchback

Inside 20

Longest

Cooke

4

167

41.8

0

1

53

UNION COUNTY

 

Punts

Yards

Average

Touchback

Inside 20

Longest

Shetley

4

134

33.5

0

1

35

 

PUNT RETURNS

GREER

 

Returns

Yards

TD

Longest

Johnson

1

59

0

59

UNION COUNTY

 

Returns

Yards

TD

Longest

None

 

 

 

 

KICKOFF RETURNS

GREER

 

Number

Yards

Touchdowns

Longest

Nesbitt

3

45

0

36

Johnson

1

-5

0

-5.0

Total

4

40

0

36

UNION CO.

 

 

 

 

Davis

4

41

0

19

Booker

2

32

0

17

Total

6

73

0

19

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