Big-play Cavaliers find the end zone

Published 11:08 pm Tuesday, September 17, 2019


Daily News

The Callaway Cavaliers ran less than 20 plays in the first half of last week’s 69-0 win over Cross Keys, and they scored eight touchdowns.

The Cavaliers basically scored a touchdown on every other offensive play in the first half, and that’s not including the handful of scoring plays that were negated because of penalties.

Senior running back Cartavious “Tank” Bigsby had five carries for 181 yards with touchdown runs of 70, 65 and 24 yards.

Junior quarterback Demetrius Coleman also had a big night, completing 8-of-9 passes for 115 yards with three touchdowns, and he added a 48-yard scoring run.

Two of Coleman’s touchdown passes when to Markus Morman, and Jymere Jones also had a scoring catch.

Freshman running back Amarion Truitt got into the act with two touchdown runs.

Jalin Shephard found the end zone twice, once on a 71-yard scoring run, but both plays were wiped out by penalties.

After being held to seven points in the season opener against Opelika, Callaway has scored 125 points in the past two games against LaGrange and Cross Keys.

Bigsby, who plans on signing with Auburn, has done plenty of damage for Callaway.

Bigsby has run for 477 yards on 40 attempts, an astounding average of 11.9 yards per carry.

Bigsby is building on his phenomenal junior season when he had more than 2,000 yards to help Callaway reach the state semifinals.

While figuring out a way to try to corral Bigsby will likely be the focal point of any opposing defense, Callaway has shown off its big-play ability in the passing game as well.

In the past two games, Coleman has completed 16-of-21 passes for 337 yards with four touchdowns, and that included a 98-yard scoring pass to Jacob Freeman against LaGrange.

Freeman, Morman and Jones each have touchdown catches, and fellow senior receiver Antinez Blount had two long receptions that set up scores against LaGrange.

“We feel like this year might be the best overall group (of receivers) we’ve had,” Callaway head coach Pete Wiggins said. “All four of those guys have played a lot of football. There’s been a lot of reps between those four young men.”

Morman, who had touchdown catches of 32 and 15 yards against Cross Keys, said having the quarterback on the same page as the receivers is a key to the success.

“That’s the kind of trust we have,” Morman said. “We trust him to get it out there, and he trusts us that we’ll be there.”

Jones, who had an 11-yard scoring catch against Cross Keys, said “we came out and tested them a couple of times to see what we had, and then we went from there.”

The challenging task for defenses is figuring out a way to keep four talented receivers in check.

“We’ve got multiple receivers,” Jones said. “And we haven’t shown (all of the offense) yet.”

DEFENSIVE LEADERS: While Callaway’s offense scored at will against Cross Keys, the defense gave up almost nothing, particularly in the first half when the starters were on the field.

Cross Keys didn’t have any first downs in the first half as Callaway built a 55-0 lead.

Defensive lineman Anthony Elliott, who is having a big senior season, led Callaway with five tackles, including two for loss.

Senior linebacker R.J. Williams and Jabari Smith each had a sack, and Vantavious Hines returned a fumble for a touchdown.

Davion Johnson had an interception, and Eli Freeman had a fumble recovery.

In three games, Callaway’s new-look defense that returned two starters from last year’s team has held its opponents to 20 points.

STARTING QUICKLY: A common theme in Callaway’s past two games has been an ability to put a bunch of points on the scoreboard in the first quarter.

In a 56-10 win over LaGrange, Callaway scored four touchdowns in the first quarter while taking a 28-3 lead.

Facing an overmatched Cross Keys team last week, Callaway again scored four first-quarter touchdowns while going up 27-0 en route to a 69-0 win.