PERRYDALE – The Pirates proved that their running game can overcome a lot of things, even their own mistakes.
Perrydale High School’s No. 6-ranked football team rushed for 507 yards on 38 carries in Friday’s 52-20 win against No. 9-ranked Sherman to clinch at least a share of the 1A Special District 4 championship.
The league championship is the first the program has won since 2008.
“It’s so important,” said senior running back Keenan Bailey, who rushed for 253 yards and three touchdowns on 24 carries.
“We haven’t won a championship in anything in six years so that would be huge to really put Perrydale back on the map as a football power and get our name back to the way it was and really restore the glory of Perrydale.”
Perrydale improves to 7-0 overall and 5-0 in the league in its first year since dropping back down to Class 1A and drops Sherman to 5-3 overall and 5-1 in the league.
The Pirates, who played an eight-man nonleague schedule last year despite being in Class 2A, finish their league season and can wrap up an outright league championship when they host Arlington/Condon at 5 p.m. Oct. 30.
“It’s a big deal,” said Perrydale coach Chris Gubrud. “We’ve had some great runs here at Perrydale, and it hasn’t been that way for the past few years. And to be back on that track where we’re contenders and to come into a new league and have won at the very least a co-championship is a special deal.”
But the Pirates committed a lot of mistakes in the win.
Perrydale committed 11 penalties for 95 yards and had two turnovers go for touchdowns.
Sherman sophomore Jacob Justesen intercepted a pass from Daniel Domes and returned it 98 yards for a touchdown for an early 6-0 lead.
“We stuck together and played smart and didn’t hang our heads,” said junior fullback CJ Marsters, who rushed for 168 yards and a touchdown on 14 carries. “We just kept playing as hard we did and kept bringing it to them and pounding it in every single play.”
Perrydale scored 24 consecutive points on two rushing touchdowns by Bailey and a 10-yard touchdown run by Haylen Janesofsky for a 24-6 lead, and would lead 30-12 at halftime.
Domes’ screen pass to Janesofsky early in the third quarter went for a 39-yard touchdown and a 38-12 lead.
But Domes was called for intentional grounding in Perrydale’s end zone for a safety and Justesen returned a fumble early in the fourth quarter to cut Perrydale’s lead to 38-20.
Justesen’s play at quarterback also gave Perrydale fits with his ability to extend plays by scrambling, but Brant Barnes and Janesofsky intercepted him in the second half.
“At the end of the game we started keeping him in front of us, and then he threw it up for grabs,” Gubrud said. “And then we picked it off. The way we dealt with the quarterback was exactly the game plan, we just needed to do a little better job early. Late in the game we did very well.”
When Perrydale has had success in the past, it was behind a power running game.
This version of the team has that component.
Between the workhorse that is Bailey, the physical running up the middle of Marsters and the speed component off the edge that Janesofsky brings – behind an experienced offensive line – Perrydale has been hard to stop on the ground this year.
“We love being a physical team,” Bailey said. “We love just pounding the ball. That’s all we do. That’s really what we’re known for is just running the ball and pounding it down and wearing people out and overpowering people and be tougher and be stronger.”
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Perrydale 52, Sherman 20
SHE- Justesen 98 interception return (run fail) 9:17.
PER- Bailey 11 run (Janesofsky pass from Domes) 1:03.
PER- Bailey 13 run (Bailey run) 9:39.
PER- Janesofsky 10 run (Janesofsky run) 3:15.
SHE- Winslow 39 pass from Justesen (pass fail) 1:16.
PER- Janesofsky 3 run (pass fail) :22.
PER- Janesofsky 39 pass from Domes (Janesofsky run) 11:01.
SHE- Safety, intentional grounding in end zone 6:56.
SHE- Justesen 70 fumble recovery (pass fail) 10:28.
PER- Bailey 54 run (Marsters run) 9:38.
PER- Masters 9 run (run fail) 8:20.
Rushing: Sherman: Justesen 10-27, Winslow 14-27, Stutzman 4-3, Blake 1- -2; Perrydale: Bailey 24-253-3, Marsters 14-168-1, Janesofsky 4-52-2, Barnes 4-41, Domes 2- -7.
Passing: Sherman: Justesen 7-13-2-84-1; Perrydale: Domes 1-3-1-39-1.
Receiving: Sherman: Winslow 3-41-1, Stutzman 2-33, Fields 1-20, Blake 1- -1; Perrydale: Janesofsky 1-39-1.