Quarterback Xavier Kane ran for 160 yards and two touchdowns and threw for another Friday as Christiansburg defeated Carroll County 44-7 in a River Ridge District game in Hillsville.
While Kane had a big game under center for the Blue Demons, it was big tight end C.J. Napper who set the tone, rumbling 61 yards for a touchdown on the first play from scrimmage, putting Christiansburg ahead 7-0 after just 14 seconds. Still, Carroll County head coach Eddie Sloss didn’t feel like the quick score was the death knell for the Cavaliers.
“It’s not the first time this season a team has scored on the first play. I can’t think of the last time we have held a team the first series of a game, the first time they get the ball,” Sloss said. “In terms of the psyche thing, I talked to them about that before the game. Of course, it’s easier said than done, if something goes wrong at the beginning of the game, we can’t let it dictate the rest of the game for us. We have to bounce back and play four quarters. I don’t think that was the game right there. I think it was us just (needing to) make a play.”
Christiansburg (2-7, 1-5 River Ridge) proved it could grind out a drive on its next possession, going 66 yards in 10 plays. Kane capped the drive with a 6-yard touchdown pass to Cole Christian to increase the lead to 14-0 with 3:06 left in the opening quarter.
The Blue Demons started to take control early in the second as Alec Henderson scored on a 3-yard run with 11:33 left in the half. After the Cavaliers fumbled on the next play from scrimmage, Kane tacked on a 24-yard touchdown run less than two minutes later to make it 28-0. Neal Rahmes would add a 33-yard field goal and Kane broke loose again for a 48-yard touchdown run to put the Blue Demons in front 37-0 at the half.
“I’m disappointed – disappointed we didn’t play better,” Sloss said. “We didn’t stop them. We didn’t move the ball on offense.”
Ronald Tester added a 9-yard touchdown run late in the third quarter to complete Christiansburg’s scoring for the night. Carroll got on the scoreboard on the ensuing possession, thanks in large part to a 45-yard run by Brennan Vaught. Tristen Ousley was in the end zone five plays later, diving in the air across the goal line for a 5-yard touchdown run. Logan Cole, kicking for Chase Goins who was injured earlier in the half, added the extra point to make it 44-7.
And though it was a tough loss for the Cavaliers, Sloss wanted to thank Carroll’s 10 seniors who played their final home game Friday night at Tommy Thompson Field.
“The seniors, they are very special. Chanz (Quesenberry) is a four-year starter. He’s persevered and he’s been through a lot. He’s given it his all in the weight room and in the classroom,” Sloss said. “He is a great student and great kid, great role model. Coleman Lowary, the same way – great role model, great student, gives you everything he’s got. And the rest of the seniors, Daniel Myers, all of them, you look at the program and can see who the seniors are, but we have a lot of good kids. And I just appreciate the fact they stuck it out and continued to come out this year and their junior year especially, my first year. I’m glad they stuck it out with us.”
Their leadership will be vital in laying the foundation for a football program Sloss believes will ultimately be successful. Things are looking up for Carroll in its JV and eighth-grade programs. Right now, the team is facing tough odds in an incredibly tough district.
“We are down to 25 players. Being a 4-A school, we have to do something about that. We are playing schools that are similar size, a little lesser enrollment with bigger numbers,” Sloss said. “But I am really excited about the group we have coming up. Not only have we invested a lot of time in these guys, but I have been part of programs where the jayvees get put to the wayside. They have their own staff, but we have a lot of potential to this jayvee team this year. They ended up going 4-5 and have some good kids I am excited about. And I am excited about what’s coming back. I’m sad we are losing some of these seniors, but I am excited about where we are heading. Right now it’s kind of hard to see through this fog, but I see the big picture and those that are on board are on board. It is coming along and I am proud of them.”
Carroll County will wrap up the regular season this Friday with a River Ridge District road game at Patrick Henry-Roanoke.
Christiansburg 14 23 7 0 – 44
Carroll County 0 0 0 7 – 7
C – Napper 61 run (Rahmes kick) 11:46
C – Christian 6 pass from Kane (Rahmes kick) 3:06
C – Henderson 3 run (Rahmes kick) 11:33
C – Kane 24 run (Rahmes kick) 9:35
C – Rahmes 33 field goal 4:11
C – Kane 46 run (kick failed) 1:56
C – Tester 9 run (Rahmes kick) 1:48
CC – Ousley 5 run (Cole kick) 8:26
First Downs 19 7
Rushes-Yards 43-390 21-87
Passing 7-11-0 8-12-0
Passing Yards 87 72
Fumbles-Lost 1-0 1-1
Penalties-Yards 9-76 6-75
RUSHING – Kane 9-160, Napper 2-69, Christian 2-41, Watson 8-30, Tester 4-29, Simpkins 3-26, Nowlin 3-23, Cook 2-17, Henderson 2-6, Walters 4-4, Team 4-minus 15.
PASSING – Kane 6-10-0 66 yds., Nowlin 1-1-0 15 yds.
RECEIVING – Christian 3-41, Tester 1-21, Sellors 2-13, Perkins 1-12.
RUSHING – Vaught 7-81, Johnson 3-16, Ousley 3-9, Wells 3-4, Robinson 5-minus 23.
PASSING – Robinson 8-12-0 72 yds.
RECEIVING – Goins 5-48, Carico 3-23.