Cavs fall in CVAC opener

Published | Sep 16, 2023

The East Burke and Maiden football teams stayed step for step with each other in Friday’s Catawba Valley 2A Conference opener at Danny Williams Field.

Two fumbles seemed to be the downfall for the Cavaliers falling to the visiting Blue Devils 36-22.

“We hung with them and just those self-inflicted wounds get us every time,” said East Burke head coach Derrick Minor. “I’m proud of our guys fighting this battle, I see their toughness out on that field.”

Maiden struck first on the scoreboard with a Josh Stover 33-yard completion to a speedy Raheim Misher.

East Burke answered back dynamically as Jacob Dellinger busted through the line and outran the Blue Devils defense for a 92-yard touchdown and a 7-6 lead after a KJ Byrd PAT kick.

Unofficially, this was the longest touchdown run since 2008 when Dustin Wilson ran an 80-yard touchdown vs. Freedom

Another hookup between Stover and Misher kept Maiden ahead 14-7 and was looking to build momentum after forcing East Burke to go three-and-out.

A botched punt return by Maiden resulted in a turnover and East Burke regained possession at the Blue Devils 31-yard line.

East Burke just needed three plays with Darren Hammons busting through the line for a 12-yard touchdown run with a Byrd PAT kick tying the score 14-14.

Maiden once again regained the lead as Stover completed his third touchdown pass for 25 yards to Hampton Reed and later added a 29-yard field goal by Michael Ly for a 23-14 halftime advantage.

East Burke’s opening drive in the third quarter went 11 plays, with one fourth down conversion, but punted from Maiden’s 47-yard line.

Brady Bostain, finishing with four tackles for loss and a sack on defense, stepped up by recovering a Blue Devil fumble.

It gave the Cavaliers new life ending a four-play drive with Asher Gebhard’s only completion for 20 yards to Dellinger and a two-point conversion run by Dellinger to just trail Maiden by one point, 23-22.

Maiden answered back with a fourth touchdown pass by Stover from midfield to Misher creating just an eight-point difference in the lead.

The next three East Burke drives ended with two lost fumbles and an interception, despite a missed pass interference call.

Bostain, Jordan Fox (13 tackles), Diego Ramos (TFL, forced fumble), Mason Robison (fumble recovery), Levi Coble (12 tackles, TFL), and Cannon Morrison (10 tackles) put in defensive efforts to maintain the Blue Devils offensive attack and block two extra point kicks.

Ramos also served as a backup punter due to Byrd going down with an injury to sit out the rest of the game.

The Cavaliers still have outscored their opposition 122-82 through four games with Dellinger scoring 66 of those points (nine touchdown runs, three 2-pt conv runs).

East Burke next faces another challenge in CVAC play traveling to Bandys next Friday.

“We got to get our guys healthy and lick our wounds, we will catch our breaks.”

Scoring Summary

First Quarter

M- Raheim Misher 33 pass from Josh Stover (run failed)

EB- Jacob Dellinger 92 run (KJ Byrd kick)

M- Misher 33 pass from Josh Stover (Stover run)

EB- Darren Hammons 12 run (Byrd kick)

Second Quarter

M- Hampton Reed 25 pass from Stover (kick blocked)

M- Michael Ly 29 field goal

Third Quarter

EB- Dellinger 20 pass from Asher Gebhard (Dellinger run)

M- Misher 50 pass from Stover (Ly kick)

Fourth Quarter

M- Stover 6 run (kick blocked)

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