Swindle answers CCHS threats with long runs

Published 5:50 pm Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Motivation can make or break high school football teams.

Jemison couldn’t have been more motivated for last week’s game against Chilton County.

Forget for a moment that the two schools are bitter rivals playing in front of what will surely be the largest crowd to see a game in the county all season. Host JHS wanted to win especially bad because a core group of players—including running back Javae Swindle—had never defeated CCHS.

“They really wanted to win that game,” Jemison coach Merritt Bowden said.

Chilton won the previous two games in the series before Jemison’s 29-13 decision on Aug. 25.

Swindle, The Clanton Advertiser’s Player of the Week, played a larger role than anyone in that outcome.

The shifty, speedy senior rushed for 259 yards and two touchdowns on 21 carries, and Swindle seemed to save his best efforts for when the Panthers needed him most.

On Jemison’s second possession, with the game still scoreless, Swindle took a pitch to the right side, dodged several would-be tacklers and sprinted down the sideline for a 74-yard touchdown run. The extra point made the score 7-0 about halfway through the first quarter.

The CCHS defense stiffened for the next couple of possessions, but with less than 2 minutes remaining before halftime, Swindle followed a 34-yard pass from senior quarterback Tre Bryant to sophomore Randy Satterfield with a 27-yard run to the Chilton 1-yard line.

Kevin King punched it in moments later for a 13-0 lead that would last through the third quarter.

The visiting Tigers struck for a score with 8:31 left in the final quarter, but Swindle answered with consecutive runs that covered 71 yards and put the Panthers back up by two scores.

CCHS scored again with less than 5 minutes to play, but again Swindle responded, this time with a 40-yard run that set up a 1-yard sneak by Bryant for the score that broke the Tigers backs.

“He’s just a playmaker,” Bowden said about Swindle. “He came through at times when his team really needed a spark.”

Honorable mention

•Cameron Andrews, Maplesville

•DeRodgus Campbell, Isabella

•Richard Hilliard, Chilton Co.

•Bo Hoffman, Thorsby

•Jimmie Lanier, Billingsley

•Jaryus Wilson, Verbena