(Photos by Tim Jaynes, Staff)
Quarterback Josh Marshall hooked up with wideout Justin Clark for three touchdowns and freshman running back Jerquawn Sherrell rambled for 119 yards and a touchdown to power the Bluejays' offense to the delight of a Homecoming crowd.
Charleston rang up 393 yards of total offense while the defense did its part, holding the Green Wave to 170 yards, 121 on the ground.
"Again, I have to commend coach Terry Brashears," said Charleston coach Al Marshall. "He gave us a good scouting report and we came up with a defense to shut down what they try to do."
"I'm thrilled that we were able to come through with five starters out," added Marshall, who benched five key players for disciplinary reasons.
On Charleston's initial possession, Marshall capped a 64-yard, 10-play drive with a 1-yard sneak for a 6-0 lead. Sherrell, a 5-foot-8, 190 pounder making his first varsity start, showed his power-running ability with 31 yards in the drive.
Said coach Marshall, "I knew he was good after seeing him in freshmen and junior varsity games and decided to move him up. He's the kind of back that just gets stronger as the night goes on."
The Bluejays had excellent field position at the Malden 43 for their second possession. Three plays later, Marshall hit Clark with a 28-yard touchdown strike to go up 12-0 at the 2:54 mark of the first period.
Charleston backs James Williams and Sherrell took turns grinding out big chunks of yardage on the next Bluejay possession.
Williams, who has been nursing a sore ankle which has limited his playing time recently, picked up 89 yards in 18 carries in his best performance of the season.
"He's a great asset to this team," said Al Marshall. "He's 'old school'--he plays hurt, you can put him in any position and he'll get the job done."
Sherrell burst in from 7 yards out, culminating a 77-yard, 12-play series, for the 18-0 lead.
During the drive, Charleston's leading rusher Joseph Watts left the game with a hip pointer and did not return, making Sherrell's contribution even more crucial.
Malden (1-3-1) fought back to score with 2:47 left in the half. Three consecutive first-down plays keyed the Green Wave drive. Quarterback Jonathan Henfiling sprinted around right end on a bootleg from a yard out for the touchdown. Ryan Criglar's 2-point conversion run narrowed the gap to 18-8.
"Malden gave us a good fight," said Al Marshall. "They played hard and I was really impressed with their quarterback."
Henfiling led Malden rushers with 53 yards on 10 carries.
Although the Bluejays marched deep into Malden territory on two occasions, the third quarter was scoreless.
Early in the final quarter, again with great field position at their own 46, the Bluejays advanced the ball to the Malden 18.
From there Marshall, who was an efficient 6-of-9 for 121 yards, lofted a pass intended for Clark. When the Malden defender mistimed his jump to deflect the high-arcing throw, Clark hauled it in and tiptoed on the sideline of the end zone for the 18-yard touchdown. Sherrell converted a 2-point conversion run for a 26-8 Charleston advantage.
"We just put Justin (Clark) where we needed him, in the slot, right end, left end," said coach Marshall. "To have a good team, you need people that can be versatile."
Clark led all receivers with six catches for 116 yards.
The Bluejays closed its scoring on a 26-yard pass play from Marshall to Clark about midway of the fourth quarter.
Faced with a 33-8 deficit, the Green Wave continued to play hard. Henfiling finished off a 61-yard drive with an 8-yard touchdown run with less than 50 seconds to go. Reid's 2-point conversion run accounted for the final score of 33-16.
Charleston hosts Dexter on Friday.