Central Region, meet the Meadowbrook Monarchs. Coming into this week’s showdown with the Dinwiddie Generals, Meadowbrook was 4-0 and 1-0 in the district with an impressive win over Manchester in week one, 49-7. Both teams were expected to make runs at the district this year, but Friday night Meadowbrook jumped out to a great start to defeat Dinwiddie 41-6, dominating the Generals on both sides of the ball, announcing themselves as one of the top teams in the region.
“My assistant coaches did a great job preparing the guys this week,” said Meadowbrook head coach Troy Taylor. “This group has been together a long time and does a great job.”
The Monarchs wasted no time, quickly advancing into Dinwiddie territory after a nice return by Devin Woodley. Seven plays later on a third and long, junior quarterback Gerard Johnson eluded two Dinwiddie defenders to throw an off-balance pass 41 yards to tight end Damon Dyson to take the lead at 6-0.
“It was supposed to be a pass to the right side,” said Johnson. “But I saw number one coming fast on the blitz, so I had to make a move and it worked out.”
The Monarchs would score on their next drive after a four and out for the Generals, led by Tyvonte Loney who scored on a 13-yard hook-up from Johnson with 4:09 left in the first. The Monarchs led 12-0 at the end of the quarter.
Just seconds into the second quarter, set up by a long completion from Johnson to Jeremy Cuthrell, it was Loney again scoring on a one-yard run, and Cuthrell converting on a two-point attempt to make 20-0 Meadowbrook.
Dinwiddie would drive the ball, but Meadowbrook’s defense held, as Leroy Cheatham knocked down a pass on a 4th and 5 in the end zone. On Meadowbrook’s first play of their drive, Loney ripped off a 90-yard run with a Johnson two-pointer to stretch the lead to 28-0, where it stood at the half.
“This is the most aggressive line I’ve ever played with,” said Loney. “They are always opening holes and getting a good push.”
It was homecoming for the Monarchs, making way for a big crowd and an even more spirited Monarch’s sideline than usual. Meadowbrook senior wide receiver/defensive back Troi Hughes was selected as homecoming king, and senior Jackie Lopez was selected as queen.
“They beat us pretty badly on their homecoming last year,” said Johnson. “So we really wanted to win this year, and our start in the first half was very important.”
After a quick four and out by the Generals, it would be Woodley returning a punt 70 yards on Meadowbrook’s first touch of the half. Meadowbrook led 35-0 after an extra point.
A stunned Generals squad was able to rebound momentarily, putting together a drive that produced an 18-yard touchdown pass.
Meadowbrook would score again, off a Dinwiddie fumble, and it would be Loney again with his fourth touchdown of the game, and his second touchdown receiving as Johnson connected with him again for a 13-yard score to give Meadowbrook the lead at 41-6.
The Monarchs were led by Loney, who rushed for 201 yards and scored four touchdowns, two of which came through the air. Johnson finished the game 8 for 13 passing for 175 yards and two touchdowns. On defense, the Monarchs forced three turnovers, getting interceptions from Woodley and sophomore Earl Hughes. Defensive lineman Javion Ward led the team in tackles with eight, and also forced and recovered a fumble. Senior Marcus Beckwith added six tackles and a sack. Dinwiddie, noted for having one of the best offenses in the district, found difficulty moving the ball for most of the game.
“Meadowbrook is a great team; they have a lot of weapons,” said Dinwiddie head coach Billy Mills “[Despite the loss] I’m proud of my kids and the fight they put up tonight.”
Meadowbrook advanced to 5-0 and 2-0 in the Central District, good for a relative tie with Thomas Dale, who is 3-0 in district play. Next up the Monarchs will be a road contest against Prince George. In other results this week, Thomas Dale defeated Hopewell 16-13 in a closely contested match-up, Matoaca blew out Colonial Heights 48-14, and L.C.
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