Wise's 5 TDs power Clinton 47-33 win
Call #5 a Man on a Mission.
Mark Wise ran for 254 yards, scored 5 touchdowns and made a TD-saving tackle at the end of the 1st half, then sat out half the 3rd quarter and the 4th quarter as Clinton built a lead and had enough left at the end to stop Aiken 47-33. Clinton is 1-2 on the season - the same place they were last season after a 14-7 loss at Aiken - and Aiken drops to 0-4. Wise was a one-man wrecking crew, and his coach, Andrew Webb, said his senior back's productive evening showed "there were 7 guys out front blocking for him."
Wise scored with 11:10 left in the 1st quarter, after Jeremiah Boyd intercepted an Aiken pass. Tquan Cromer snagged another interception and that set up Clinton at its own 2-yard line. The Red Devils went 98 yards in 15 plays to score on a - mama, there's that man again - Wise run on 4th and 6. Vilo Boyd got the next interception, leading to a Kris Holmes touchdown - it was 20-0 Clinton with :22 left in the 1st quarter.
Wise ripped off a 56-yard touchdown run, and scored again with 3:53 to play before halftime, making it 33-7 Clinton. The Red Devils were going to need every one of those 33 points as Aiken staged the furious rally fueled by on-side kick recoveries. Wise and Darien Bailey scored 2nd half touchdowns for Clinton.
"We got off to a real fast start, we needed that," Webb said, "because we did not finish the way we needed to. We worked real hard this week on pass defense, we work hard on it every week. We talked about that before the game, we needed one, we got one, it really set the tone for us early on."
About Wise, Webb said, "Yeah, he played real good. You know Mark did good, to rush for 254 yards and 5 touchdowns or whatever it was, that meant there were seven people in there in front of him doing real good, too. He'd tell you the same thing, that's a really good game for Mark but it's a good game for those guys getting after it for him."
This was a Dedication Game for the Red Devils. On Tuesday, each player invited a special woman in his life to a dinner, and read a letter that each had composed in the computer lab. The women wrote back to their significant player. Webb said it was a way to teach the young men "how to say, 'I love you.'" CHS Athletics also had a meet and greet for new baseball head coach Tom Fortman before the game, and in a pre-game ceremony gave special recognition to the Williams family - to honor the memory of the late Harold Williams, a coach for 36 years. Earlier Friday, the Red Devils players of the week (Laurens and Greer games) participated with Webb and assistant coach Anson Cunningham in the Laurens County Touchdown Club's second meeting of the 2017 season. Webb introduced Sam Tiller, Konnor Richardson, Tquan Cromer, Kody Varn and Brooks Seawright to the Touchdown Club.