Lake Clifton shuts down No. 12 Mervo in 14-8 win Upset diminishes Mustangs' playoff chances

November 04, 1995|By Lem Satterfield | Lem Satterfield,SUN STAFF

Talk is not always cheap. Just ask No. 12 Mervo. It paid dearly for some pre-game boasting yesterday at unranked Lake Clifton.

"One of their assistants, Frank Pryor, said they were going to ruin our homecoming by three touchdowns," said first-year Lake Clifton coach James Monroe. "They said they'd embarrass us."

But it was the Mustangs who left 14-8 losers of a city 4A league battle, their four-game winning streak obliterated and perhaps their state playoff hopes along with it.

On this damp and rainy homecoming, Lake Clifton sophomore Djarrell Dunn was king.

He ran like a bull offensively (12 carries, 55 yards, one touchdown), mostly behind center Rodney Scott, as the Lakers (6-3, 6-1) churned out 165 of their 190 total yards on the ground.

Dunn was the perfect complement to speedy sophomore Darnell Pearsall (17 carries, 102 yards), scoring on the first down of the second quarter from 7 yards to end a 10-play, 75-yard drive.

Dunn was equally debilitating as a linebacker, with 15 tackles and two sacks. Dunn and Brodie Crowder (one sack), a transfer from Mervo, helped to limit the Mustangs to 90 yards of offense -- 34 in the first half.

"This was only my second game at running back," said Dunn, who replaced injured Teon Rhodes last week. "I like running back, but playing linebacker is better."

Junior quarterback Joe Abel's 5-yard touchdown run capped a 13-play, 50-yard march for a 14-0 lead three minutes before the final period.

"We know we have a slim chance at the playoffs, but this was for bragging rights," Abel said.

The effort came against a Mustangs squad that led twice against No. 3 Patterson before losing, 18-14. In its wins, Mervo (6-3, 5-2) has outscored opponents by an average of 32 points (34-4) and has beaten No. 13 Meade, 16-14, and shut out Northwestern, 52-0, Southwestern, 28-0, and Douglass, 20-0.

Mervo senior running back Andrew Scott has 1,058 yards and 13 touchdowns this year, but was limited to 62 yards. His 85-yard kickoff return for a touchdown, and the conversion run by Jimmy Johnson with a minute left in the third period, were the bright spots for Mervo.

Quarterback Gregorio Lee entered the game with 740 passing yards and six touchdowns, but went 2-for-8 for four yards and was sacked three times.

"They were tough, but maybe I should have gotten my offensive plays in better," said Blake, who next faces Northern, a 20-16 loser to Lake Clifton last week. "We know this loss hurts our playoff chances. We'll just have to try and go out on a good note next week."

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