Not much went Shaw’s way Thursday night.
Cairo marched down the field on the game’s opening possession and never looked back as the Syrupmakers blanked Shaw 40-0 in Region 1-4A matchup at A.J. McClung Memorial Stadium.
Cairo produced over 300 yards of offense, but it was the big special teams and defensive plays that doomed the Raiders. The Syrupmakers produced a safety, a fumble recovery for a touchdown as well as a 64-yard punt return in the first half to build their advantage.
“I mean the scoreboard obviously says 40-0, but we played better than that,” said Shaw head coach Charles Stamey. “Our defense held their offense to just 10 points in the first half, but we gave up 16 points from special teams and turnovers, so we have to work on special teams.”
Cairo made the first drive look easy marching 74 yards on 10 plays. John Michael Owens hit Walter Grant to get into Shaw territory before turning to the run. Eventually, Cario gave the ball to its do-it-all-star Walter Grant at the goal line for the score.
Shaw’s first drive didn’t go as well. After three plays, Shaw went back to punt in its on end zone, but Cairo got a hand on the ball, sending it through the goal line for a safety.
The second quarter didn’t go much better for Shaw. After Cairo made it 12-0 on a field goal, Shaw had a chance to get back into the game following a Syrupmaker turnover. However, things went the opposite way for the Raiders as quarterback Andrew Tillery was sacked on third down and fumbled the ball. Jahsearill Patterson scooped and ran for the 36-yard touchdown.
Cairo found another creative way to score points late in the opening half. After forcing Shaw to punt, D.J. Donaldson zig-zag his way across the field for a 64-yard punt return to put the Syrupmakers up 26-0.
Up big in the second half, Cairo played more conservatively, but still found ways to move the ball. Early in the third quarter, the Syrupmakers put together a seven-play touchdown drive while capping the scoring off with a quick 14-yard run from Randolph Scott following an interception.
Shaw didn’t have much offense on the night as Tillery went 4-for-12 in passing attempts with 36 yards and an interception. Marcus Newsome gained 57 yards on the ground for the Raiders.
Shaw will play Carver at Memorial Stadium on Sept. 30.
Thursday at Memorial Stadium
C—Walter Grant 1 run (Cole Phillips kick), 8:20
C—Safety, blocked punt, 6:20
C—Phillips 24 kick, 8:29
C—Jahsearii Patterson 66 fumble return (Phillips kick), 6:38
C—D.J. Donaldson 64 punt return (Phillips kick), 6:38
C—Grant 1 run (Phillips kick), 7:33
C—Randolph Scott 14 run (Phillips kick), 6:19
Records: Cairo 4-1, 2-0 Region 1-4A. Shaw 1-4, 0-2. Next: Shaw, vs. Carver, Sept. 30, at Memorial, 7:30 p.m.