FRANKFORT - The Danville defense completely shut down the passing attack of Frankfort on Friday,
But the Admirals turned the ball over four times and had no answer for Teantre McGee on either side of the ball, and they suffered a 28-14 loss in their regular season finale at a rainy Sower Field.
McGee accounted for all four touchdowns for Frankfort (9-1), ranked third in Class A, including a fumble return for a score that put the game away early in the fourth quarter. He rushed for 168 of Frankfort’s 228 yards on just 10 carries.
“There were three plays that killed us. They got the inside trap two huge times, and the third I’m not sure if they trapped us or just ran a basic dive,” Danville coach Sam Harp said of three plays on which got McGee long gains. “But we came in and shut their passing game down.”
Frankfort quarterback Hawkins entered the game with 2,045 passing yards and 23 touchdowns, while Aaron Jackson had 43 catches for 1,094 yards and 13 touchdowns. But Hawkins did not complete a pass in the first half and finished 2 for 12 for 9 yards with two interceptions, and Jackson had just one catch for 14 yards.
“I think our secondary played well and we got good pressure on their quarterback,” Harp said. “We just gave up that trap, and it killed us.”
But it was turnovers that led to both Frankfort touchdowns in the second half, which began with the teams tied at 14-all.
After Danville’s Jadarious Brown picked off Hawkins near the goal line, backup quarterback Chris Davis, who was playing for injured Devonta Alcorn, fumbled the ball away at the Admirals’ 3-yard line, which set up McGee’s 1-yard run that gave Frankfort (9-1) a 20-14 lead with 49 seconds left in the third quarter.
On Danville’s next drive, Damani Del Rosario was hit hard and the ball came loose. After it was kicked around, McGee finally scooped up the ball and went in from 30 yards out for another score, then ran for a two-point conversion that made it 28-14 led with 11:11 remaining in the game.
“Offensively, we’ve got to handle the ball, and we didn’t do it,” said Harp, whose team lost three fumbles. “We had some bad snaps, and we had a couple of times we didn’t handle it on the exchange. It is what it is. I felt if we don’t give up those traps, we beat them. I think if we don’t turn it over a couple of those times, I think we beat them. But that’s part of the game. We didn’t get it done.”
Danville (7-3) had a chance to get points on its first drive of the third quarter but came away empty.
Starting at their own 30, the Admirals marched 67 yards in 12 plays to the Frankfort 13. But instead of trying a field goal ona fourth-and-4, they went for it and Brown was stopped for no gain.
“I thought about going for the field goal, but I didn’t feel like at the time that three points was going to hold up,” Harp said. “And they came up with the stop, and you may second-guess yourself, but you can’t do that.”
McGee helped set up Frankfort’s first score. He intercepted Davis’ pass on Danville’s first drive, then ran it in from 37 yards out on the Panthers’ first play.
The score stayed at 6-0 until Danville was able to get its ground game going.
A 34-yard punt return by Ace Ray gave the Admirals a first down at the Frankfort 13-yard line. On the first pay, Brown rumbled in for the score that gave them a 7-6 lead with 5:17 left in the second quarter.
“I felt Ace Ray did a good job getting the ball on the returns and getting it upfield for us and getting us in good field position,” Harp said.
Danville forced Frankfort to punt on its next series, but the snap went over punter Dre Scott’s head and into the end zone. Scott managed to avoid a safety, but the Admirals got the ball at the Panthers’ 24. A 16-yard run by Jawan Grey set up Del Rosario’s 1-yard run as the Admirals took a 14-6 lead with 1:31 left in the first half.
Grey finished with 60 rushing yards on 15 carries, and Brown had 14 rushes for 52 yards. But Davis was hit for 36 yards in losses, and the Admirals managed just 66 yards of offense, while Frankfort had 237.
Sixty-one of those yards came on Frankfort’s first play of its next series, as McGee took a handoff and sprinted to the Danville 19. After a Hawkins incompletion, McGee took a handoff right but had to cut back left and went in for the touchdown. Hawkins then threw to Scott for a two-point conversion to make it 14-all at halftime.
Harp said he was not sure about the availability of Alcorn, who suffered a blow to the head a week earlier, and lineman J.K. Howard, who has been out with a hand injury, for Danville’s Class AA playoff opener this Friday against Betsy Layne.
He said Alcorn had to go through the typical protocol for a head injury and must be headache free for 24 hours before he is cleared to play.
“We’ve just got to see on that,” Harp said. “There’s a chance we still may not have him.”
Howard goes back to the hand doctor Monday, five weeks after his injury.
“They’ll just check him and see how it’s healing,” Harp said. “We may get him next week, we may not get him until the second week of the playoffs.”
Danville 0 14 0 0 — 14
Frankfort 6 8 6 8 — 28
Frankfort — Teantre McGee 37 run (kick failed), 9:57.
Danville — Jadarious Brown 13 run (Damir Karapandzic kick), 5:17.
Danville — Damani Del Rosario 1 run (Karapandzic kick), 1:31.
Frankfort — McGee 19 run (Dre Scott pass from Chris Hawkins), 1:01.
Frankfort — McGee 1 run (pass failed), :49.
Frankfort — McGee 30 fumble recovery (McGee run), 11:11.
First downs 11 8
Rushes-yards 45-55 27-228
Passing 11 9
Total Net Yards 66 237
Comp-Att-Int 1-4-1 2-12-2
Fumbles-Lost 3-3 1-0
Penalties-Yards 2-20 7-40
RUSHING—Danville, Jawan Grey 15-60, Jadarious Brown 14-52, Tyquan Matthews 4-39, Olyjawan Ford 1-2, Damani Del Rosario 3-minus 2, Chris Davis 8-minus 36. Frankfort, Teantre McGee 10-168, Chris Brooks 2-38, Chris Hawkins 4-15, Jalen Washington 10-5, James Maddox 1-2.
PASSING—Danville, Davis 1-4-1-11. Frankfort, Hawkins 2-12-2-9.
RECEIVING—Danville, Jacobie Harris 1-11. Frankfort, Aaron Jackson 1-14, Washington 1-minus 5.