Kh'Ron McClain led the Knights to a win in their home opener Friday, but now DWS must regroup and begin focusing on a tough matchup with Stratford Academy next week.
ALBANY — Coach Allen Lowe chuckled, knowing he might have dodged a huge bullet Friday night.
What looked to be a blowout early almost turned into a nightmare for the Deerfield-Windsor Knights.
“Overall, we played hard, whether or not we started cruising a bit, I don’t know, but it was a good win for us,” Lowe said of Friday’s 40-21 victory against Mount de Sales that was quite a bit closer than the final score indicated.
Deerfield moved to 2-1 thanks to the huge performances by quarterback Dallas Margeson and receiver/running back Kh’Ron McClain.
“We’ve gotta understand that we need to play four quarters, we’ve had two tough games back-to-back, but next week’s gonna be a real war,” Lowe said of next week’s showdown with Stratford Academy.
After a tough loss to state power North Florida Christian in Tallahassee last week, the Knights started the night on a high note with 21 unanswered points, starting with a 52-yard toss from Margeson to Austin Fallaw on the first play from scrimmage.
McClain, a senior Herald Dynamite Dozen selection, would burst up the middle for an 81-yard touchdown, then Zach Jarzen exploited a Cavalier lapse in coverage for a 15-yarder from Margerson as time expired in the first quarter. After a Margerson rushing touchdown, Mount de Sales countered with a 15-yard strike to receiver Ken Brown, but the Knights seemed to have the game on ice, taking a 34-7 lead into halftime.
Deerfield removed their starters at the half. The Cavaliers would show signs of life again when fullback Alex Sands found a seam and took a kickoff return 70 yards to score in the third quarter, bringing the score to 40-14 in the third. Perhaps the main reason the Cavaliers weren’t able to mount a legitimate rally was sophomore Matthew Fox. He notched three tackles, including two for loss, and recovered two fumbles in the third quarter, one of which led to a McClain touchdown. Between Fox and junior Patrick Forrestal, it was only a matter of time before the Knights put the clamps down on Mount de Sales’ offense. Juniors Daniel Cheshire, Coleman Butler, and Forrestal would combine for two and a half sacks and two forced fumbles.
With all the turnovers, Deerfield finally put the game out of reach for good. With the offense already clicking, it wasn’t a matter of if, but when.
“We just had to bounce back and get ready to play (after the Cavaliers scored),” Margeson said.
Added McClain: “We just had to stay home and not put pressure on ourselves. Just stay home and keep playing like we did in the first half.”
In addition to McClain’s 117 yards and three touchdowns, junior Ke’Marvin Pitts added 73 yards, while defensive standout Fox and Sam Shellhaas each added 37 yards.