Rough night for the Jackets
By BRIAN WHITMORE
Sports Editor - Union Daily Times
The scoreboard at Union County Stadium didn't work on Friday night. That was a good thing for the Yellow Jacket faithful.
Rival Gaffney defeated Union 41-0 in dominating fashion, showing why the Indians are the defending Big 16 state champions.
It was the third straight loss to a Big 16 school for Union.
"The three teams we've played are very talented," said Jacket coach Tommy Bobo. "Each game we've done things that have hurt ourselves. I don't feel we've played a full game the way we want to play it, the way our kids expect to play it, the way the coaches expect to see it played."
Gaffney racked up more than 400 yards total offense, more than 200 yards through the air.
The Indians (3-0) started with a 26-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Malcom Long to tight end Richard Good. Tommy Strickland kicked the extra point.
Steffen Foster rushed for a 1-yard touchdown and the Indians led 13-0 after one quarter of play.
Jeremiah Cochran added a 5-yard touchdown run. A two-point pass further extended the lead. This drive covered 94 yards.
Tyson Petty caught a 20-yard touchdown pass from Long with 40 seconds left in the half. Strickland's kick was good and Gaffney led 28-0 at halftime.
The Indians intercepted Union to open the second half. Mark Tate caught a 23-yard touchdown pass from Long and the Indians led 34-0.
After another interception, Foster capped the scoring with a 7-yard touchdown run in the final period and Sinclair kicked the PAT.
A bright spot for Union was the play of Rodrick Gilmore, who caught six passes for 111 yards.
"He had a gutty performance," said Bobo. "Even with the score what it was, Rodrick kept running his routes and had an opportunity to make some plays. He made a great catch in the first half (40 yards on third down). He's a competitor and he hates to lose, we want that to rub off on all of them and I think it will."
On the defensive side, Union's Billy Jennings intercepted a Long pass to kill Gaffney's second drive. The Jackets also recovered a fumble late in the game.
Union will build on the positives and work on the negatives.
"We have to keep focusing on Union and get each individual player better," said Bobo.
Union (0-3) travels to Wade Hampton to open region play next week.
"We're going to come out Monday and try to continue to work and get better," said Bobo. "We'll see where we're at, because everything is for keeps now."
Gaffney 41, Union 0
Gaffney 13 15 6 7 - 41
Union 0 0 0 0 - 0
G - Good catch 26 from Long (Strickland kick)
G - Foster run 1 (kick failed)
G - Cochran run 5 (2 point pass)
G - Petty catch 20 from Long (Strickland kick)
G - Tate catch 23 from Long (kick failed)
G - Foster run 7 (Strickland kick)
Rushing: Union 30; Gaffney 172
Passing: Union 160; Gaffney 234
Total: Union 190; Gaffney 406
First downs:Union 10; Gaffney 15
Penalties: Union 9-83; 6-55
Turnovers:Union 4 (3 interception, 1 fumble); Gaffney 2 (1 interception, 1 fumble)
Receiving: Union - Rodrick Gilmore 6-111; LJ Mobley 2-23; Jay Crawford 1-4; Jack Arthur 1-9; Kierre Smith 1-13. Gaffney - Mark Tate 4-60; Anthony Tyus
1-45; David Dewberry 1-48.
Rushing: Union - Freddie Bates 10-17; Bo Whitney 3-17. Gaffney - Jeremiah Cochran 10-75; Anthony Tyus 5-54; Steffen Foster 9-40.
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