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Chester rolls past Columbia

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By Travis Jenkins

Chester Coach Victor Floyd said his team was on pace for 100. He meant plays, but he could also have been talking about points.

The Cyclones took control of a back-and-forth game early in the second quarter, rattling off four touchdowns in the frame to take a 42-21 lead. With a running second-half clock, they cruised to an eighth-straight win by a 48-28 count over Columbia.

Chester struck fast and struck first, getting a 41-yard scoring pass from John Erby to Zion Mills early in the opening stanza for a 6-0 lead. Columbia was able to keep pace, though, mounting a quick drive that culminated in a five-yard Thomas Green touchdown run. The Capitals converted the PAT (after having blocked Chester’s try a few minutes before) and held a 7-6 lead.

Chester needed less than two minutes to go back in front. Erby scored on a 10-yard run, then hooked up with Stan Mills on a pass for a two-point conversion and a 14-7 advantage.

Columbia tied the game at 14-14 late in the first, but Erby continued his huge night midway through the second, scoring on a 17-yard scamper. The extra point attempt missed, though, so when Rico Dorsey ripped off a 75-yard touchdown run for Columbia and the Capitals added the PAT, they had a surprising 21-20 lead. That didn’t hold up for long, though, with Mills capping a short drive with a touchdown for Chester. The Cyclones then got a turnover and scored another quick one on a short Erby keeper, then Quay Hardin reeled in a 40-yard touchdown throw from Erby. Chester scored those three touchdowns in about two minutes.

Early in the third, Erby accounted for his sixth score of the night on a with a five-yard run to make it 48-21. Columbia scored once more, late in the fourth, but the outcome had long since been determined by that time.

Erby had over 300 total yards of offense, while Mills added 138 yards rushing, marking the third time he eclipsed the century mark. Floyd said at this time of the year, you take wins however you get can get them.

“We probably gave up too many points, but we’ll take the ‘W’ and run,” he said.

Floyd said some of the point his team allowed came on big plays due to busted assignments or lapses in focus. Still, the offense was more than productive enough to make up the difference.

“We had one pick on the first or second drive, but other than that, the offense was very productive. We ran a lot of plays. We had 49 in the first half, so we were on pace, if it had been a regulation game, to get almost 100,” Floyd said.

Chester now stands at 7-1 overall and 2-0 in region play. The victory all but locked up a playoff spot for the Cyclones. Chester goes to Camden this Friday.