Fox Creek 29 Whitmire 7

By T.J. Lundeen

Fox Creek’s football team had a problem with slow starts during its scrimmages.

During the Class A Region I Jamboree at Ware Shoals High School on Aug. 15, the Predators had no issues on offense, defeating Whitmire 29-7 in one half of football.

Fox Creek’s defense set the tone early, stopping Whitmire’s first drive on a fourth down play to take over the ball on Whitmire’s 48-yard line. Sophomore Jontae Herrin took a handoff on the first play from scrimmage and turned the corner on the Wolverine defense for a touchdown.

“It’s a good thing, especially with him being so young,” Russ Schneider, Fox Creek’s head coach, said of Herrin’s first run. “He didn’t play much varsity last year as a freshman, but we’re young this year with Jontae being a sophomore and Dalton (Swires) as a junior. These guys are playing up to the level that we’ve asked them to play at. It’s exciting to get another back like that, and we knew he was going to be good, we just didn’t expect him to be that quick. He hit that corner and turned up on something we’ve never seen.”

The Predator defense came up with another fourth down stop, which the offense turned into seven points behind the running of Swires, who went 17-yards on his first carry. After forcing a safety on Whitmire’s next drive, Herrin came up with a touchdown on the kickoff, putting Fox Creek up 23-0.

“On the kickoff return, I’ve got to give it to my kickoff return team – it wouldn’t have happened without the blocking,” Herrin said. “I saw a hole and I just hit it and beat the kicker out to take it to the crib. I’ve got to keep in the weight room and keep working harder. I’ve got to keep getting better and better.”

The 23-0 first quarter was just the start Schneider was looking for in all phases – offense, defense and special teams.

“We’ve pushed them in our scrimmages so far this year,” he said. “We’ve waited several series before we ever really got going, so we really tried to focus on that this week, to go out first and hit them in the mouth early. We were able to do that this time.”

The Predator defense was stifling in the first quarter of action, not allowing Whitmire into the red zone for the first 12 minutes.

“We’re flowing to the ball – we’re not as big as we’ve been in the past, but we’re quicker,” Schneider said of his defense.

In the second quarter, with many of the reserves in the game, each team added a score. Swires scored on a 29-yard run for Fox Creek and West Jenkins found the end zone on a 1-yard run for Whitmire.

Defeating Whitmire gives the Predators confidence going into the regular season, which begins on Aug. 22 with Dreher coming to play Fox Creek at 7 p.m.

“I feel like we’re doing very well, and we’re happy with the outcome,” Schneider said.

“Dreher is going to be a tough one, a good test for us.”

Dreher will visit Fox Creek at Lions Field on Friday at 7 p.m.

T.J. Lundeen is a reporter for The North Augusta Star. Follow him on Twitter @lundeentj for more updates.

FC – 23 6 — 29

W – 0 7 — 7

Scoring Summary

First Quarter

FC – Jontae Herrin 48-yard run (Michael Ray kick good) —

FC – Dalton Swires 17-yard run (Michael Ray kick good)

FC – Safety

FC – Herrin 87-yard kick return (Michael Ray kick good)

Second Quarter

FC – Swires 29-yard run (Michael Ray kick no good)

W – West Jenkins 1-yard run (kick good)


FC – Herrin 2-52-1TD, Swires 3-57-2TD, KJ Green 2-26, Caleb Charlton 1-18