Gwynn Park survives Red Storm, moves on in 2A bracket

BRANDYWINE – The opening 2A regional semifinal matchup between Gwynn Park and Edmondson-Westside was a battle until the very end.

A 15-yard touchdown catch from Gwynn Park wide receiver Devin Curry, which happened early in the second quarter, proved to be the game-winner against the Red Storm. Despite the win, Gwynn Park Head Coach Danny Hayes still wanted more out of his team’s 8-2 victory on Nov. 10.

“Not good. That’s not the Gwynn Park you should have seen tonight,” Hayes said. “This wasn’t a good game at all on both sides of the ball. The defense didn’t give up any points, but there were mistakes I saw that others won’t.”

The Red Storm received to start the game. However, they struggled to find success offensively, which led to a three-and-out. A perfectly placed punt by Shawntae Brown pinned the Yellowjackets on their own 1-yard line.

Gwynn Park had its back against the wall on fourth down after an incomplete pass fell to the turf. While attempting to punt from the 1-yard line, a gang of Red Storm defenders blocked the kick for a safety with 9:17 to go in the first.

After the early score, both teams still had trouble moving the ball offensively. Once the second quarter got underway, the Yellowjackets’ offense finally found a way to move the ball. Following a 5-yard dash by Kibwe Galloway, quarterback Kamari Brown connected with Devin Curry for a 15-yard touchdown with a little more than three minutes remaining in the half. The Yellowjackets completed the two-point conversion to make it 8-2.

“I’m feeling really excited to get the touchdown for my team to get the win,” Curry said about the score.

The second-half momentum leaned on the side of the Yellowjackets. However, the opening drive did not go according to plan. The drive ended with a sack by a bevy of Red Storm defenders.

Following the defensive stop, Edmondson looked for answers on offense, but after a strong drive, quarterback Teon Gardner made a mistake that changed the game. Following a sack, a pass thrown across the middle fell into the hands of Gwynn Park’s Ryan Clemons for an interception with three minutes to go in the third.

Clemons felt that was a crucial moment in the game.

“I felt good. I feel like we needed that just to get our offense pumped up,” he said.

The mistakes continued for Edmondson in the fourth quarter. With time against the Red Storm, Damontaa Johns threw a pass intended for Malik Taylor, but Galloway came down with the ball instead.

Following a quick three-and-out by the Yellowjackets, it came down to one last possession for the Red Storm. With less than 15 seconds to go, Gardner threw a pass into the corner of the endzone to Taylor, but was deflected away by Galloway to end the game.

Gwynn Park took a knee in victory formation as it watched the clock expire.

After a brutal day on offense for both teams, the Yellowjackets prevailed with only 103 total offensive yards.

The Edmondson-Westside football season comes to an end as it finished its 2017 campaign with a 7-4 record. Despite the end of the season, Head Coach Corey Johnson was proud of his team.

“I feel a bit down because we had a lot of opportunities, but we played our hearts out and only gave up eight points to the No. 1 team,” Johnson said.

Gwynn Park advances in the 2A regional finals and will play Hereford on Nov. 17.

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