Burford leads Stoney Creek to dominant victory over Southfield A&T
Southfield — Cam Burford and Rochester Hills Stoney Creek continued their impressive unbeaten season with a dominating, 36-7 victory over Southfield A&T Friday night.
Stoney Creek — ranked No. 15 in The Detroit News Super 20 — is 5-0, already equaling last year’s win total and it had to do it without fans, as A&T has not allowed fans to attend its home games all season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Burford helped Stoney Creek take a 22-7 halftime lead, accounting for 147 total yards of offense, including 110 yards rushing on 14 carries.
Burford was the speed back in Stoney Creek’s running game which piled up 313 yards, finishing with 193 yards on 26 carries. Jon Fogler was the power back (120 yards, 20 carries). Stoney Creek held a 379-82 advantage in total yards.
Stoney Creek’s defense batted down the first two passes from A&T freshman phenom Isaiah Marshall, who already owns an offer from Michigan, forcing a three-and-out.
Then, Burford set up Stoney Creek’s first touchdown with a 27-yard reception on a third-and-12 play to set up Ryan Eckhout’s 15-yard TD pass to Grant Lowery with 4:47 left in the first quarter.
“It was third and long and we didn’t want to go three-and-out on our first series, so I went out on a route out of the backfield and Ryan put it right on the money,” Burford said.
Burford broke loose for a 53-yard run on Stoney Creek’s second series, leading to Eckhout’s second TD toss, this one coming to Joe Murray for a 14-yard TD on a fourth-down play for a 15-0 lead with 8:52 left in the half.
With A&T (1-3) having multiple players out with injuries, including Arizona State-bound two-way lineman Caleb Banks and Ball State-bound running back Rae’quin Lee, Marshall was under heavy pressure all night. He misfired on six of his first seven passes in the first quarter, including a perfectly thrown long pass which would have gone for a score … but was dropped.
Marshall came back to connect on 4-of-5 passes for 53 yards, including a 19-yard TD pass to Darnell Adams to pull with 15-7 with 2:46 left in the half.
Stoney Creek quickly answered A&T’s touchdown with one of its own on the final series of the half, piling up all 67 yards on the ground with Burford scoring on a 4-yard run with 9 seconds left.
Stoney Creek took the second-half kickoff and Burford again went to work, this time picking up a first down on a fourth-and-2 run from his own 28, picking up 3 yards and having 15 more tacked on after A&T was called for a targeting penalty, ultimately leading to Fogler’s 26-yard TD run to open a 29-7 cushion.
When asked what team goes for it on fourth down from its own 28 with a 22-7 lead, Burford replied: “We do. We knew we could pick up the first down because we play more physical.”
Burford would score on a 43-yard out of the wildcat on a fourth-and-7 play with 1:44 left.
“They give me a lot of options, really like playing in the wildcat, like to throw it, too,” Burford said.
A&T ran just 15 plays during the second half, getting just three series since Stoney Creek used every second of the play clock while also getting things done on the ground (25 carries, 161 yards).
All three of A&T’s drives advanced into Stoney Creek territory, but stalled with Stoney Creek defensive back Carson Chambers ending two with interceptions, including one when he made a great diving catch at the 5 when cutting in front of the receiver.
Marshall, who was 8-of-24 for 80 yards and a TD with the two interceptions, had yet another perfectly thrown pass dropped in the end zone on A&T’s final drive.