James Island quarterback Justin Bolus didn't want to run out the clock just before halftime. Bolus, a senior, lobbied Trojans head coach Randy Hilyer to take a shot at the end zone. It's a good thing that Hilyer listened to his quarterback.
Bolus, who rushed for 124 yards and a touchdown, threw a 62-yard TD pass in the final seconds of the first half to lead James Island past Beaufort, 22-21, Friday night before a crowd of about 2,500 at Floyd Hiott Jr. Field.
The Trojans, who improved to 4-2 overall, snapped a two-game losing streak and beat a team from Beaufort County for the first time since 2003.
Trailing 15-14 with less than a minute left in the second quarter, Bolus convinced Hilyer on the sidelines that the Trojans could get some points on the scoreboard before halftime if given the opportunity.
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"I didn't want to take a knee and run out the clock," Bolus said. "I thought if we could get the right coverage that we could get the ball down the field."
When Bolus came to the line of scrimmage, he saw man-to-man coverage on wide receiver Devin Brown. Brown got past the Eagles cornerback and split the two safeties, hauling in Bolus' pass and scoring with just 9 seconds left before halftime.
"As soon as I saw the man coverage on Devin, I knew we had a chance," said Bolus, who completed just 2 of 8 passes for 76 yards. "Devin ran a great route, and I knew once he caught it, he was going to score. No one was going to catch him."
James Island running back Cornell Stanley added the two-point conversion and the Trojans led 22-15 at halftime.
"Huge play. I'm glad I listened to my quarterback," Hilyer said. "That was probably the play of the game. Beaufort had just scored and grabbed the momentum, and that play gave it right back to us."
The Eagles (3-3) did make things interesting in the second half when D'Vonte Cohen scored on a 1-yard run to cut the gap to 22-21 with 6:09 left in the third quarter.
But the Trojans defense forced two Beaufort fumbles over the final 18 minutes of the game as the Eagles' potent rushing attack was limited to 229 yards of total offense.
"The defense played great all game," Hilyer said. "That's a very good Beaufort team and we were able to contain them and force a couple of turnovers."
James Island jumped to a 7-0 lead on Bolus' 7-yard TD run in the first quarter. After a Beaufort interception, Brown scored on a 9-yard reverse to give the Trojans a 14-0 lead with 9 seconds left in the opening quarter.
The Eagles answered with two scores of their own in the second quarter. Parrish Holmes and Cohen each capped long drives with 5-yard TD runs. Cohen's score game with 1:07 left before hafltime.
James Island 22, Beaufort High 21
JI--Justin Bolus 7 run (Collin Cooper kick)
JI--Devin Brown 9 run (Collin Cooper kick)
B--Parrish Holmes 5 run (Mitchell Stewart kick)
B--D'Vonte Cohen 5 run (Cohen run)
JI--Devin Brown 62 pass from Justin Bolus (Collin Cooper kick)
B--D'Vonte Cohen 1 run (pass failed)