Ravens stay alive in playoff hunt with 49-7 win over Panthers

Senior Trey Hatfield makes a Polytech defender fall down as he carries the ball during Sussex Tech’s 49-7 win Thursday night. Delaware State News/Ben Heck

GEORGETOWN — Junior running back Jalen Snead carried the ball just two times for the Sussex Tech High football team Thursday night, but he turned those two carries into 94 yards and a pair of touchdowns.

Snead’s 68-yard and 26-yard first-quarter touchdown runs led the Ravens (5-4) to a 49-7 victory over Polytech High (1-8) on Senior Night.

The win keeps the Ravens alive in the playoff hunt heading into the final week of the regular season.

Junior Jalen Snead, shown playing defensive back, scored a pair of first-quarter rushing touchdowns.

“We knew we had to win this game, so we just came out and played our hearts out,” Snead said.

The Ravens extended their win streak to three games, outscoring Caesar Rodney, Smyrna and Polytech by a combined 151-19 over that span.

“Polytech had nothing to really lose and everything to gain, so I told the boys it’s a special night for us but they’re playing for everything — they’re trying to get a win in any way — and our kids just came out and really played hard offensively and defensively,” said Sussex Tech coach Mark Quillin.

After Sussex Tech forced a punt on Polytech’s first drive, Snead took a handoff from junior quarterback Chase Snyder and dashed down the field for the 68-yard score on the Ravens’ first play from scrimmage less than three minutes into the game.

Junior Jordan Harper turns the corner during a kickoff return against Polytech.

“I saw the way they lined up, and we came out with the game plan that we were going to attack the perimeter, so I saw green grass and I just took advantage of it,” Snead explained. “I followed my blockers, they did a good job blocking today.”

Four minutes later, Snead’s second score of the night from 26 yards out put the Ravens ahead two touchdowns.

“The second touchdown I was actually surprised, because they lined up the same way,” he said. “It took a little bit longer to develop, but I saw green grass again and I take advantage of it every time.”

“He is a really talented kid,” Quillin said. “We’ve been mixing it up, every week has kind of had different guys, and we felt we could get to the perimeter on the weaker side. I didn’t expect the first play to go. The blocking on the edge was fantastic.”

The early touchdown runs opened up the offense for the Ravens.

Junior K.J. Custis and senior Michael Norsworthy ran for 33-yard and six-yard scores, respectively, while Snyder tossed a 23-yard touchdown to senior wideout Matt Warrington to complete the first-half scoring.

With a 35-0 lead and a running clock heading into the second half, senior Trey Hatfield blocked a Polytech punt and recovered it in the end zone at the 2:20 mark of the third quarter to extend the lead to 42-0.

Polytech’s senior quarterback Vincent Tascione threw a 49-yard touchdown to sophomore receiver Collin Jaksch to breakup the shutout bid with just over eight minutes to play.

A 21-yard touchdown run for senior Dimitry Edouard with 3:35 remaining completed the Week 9 must-win for the Ravens.

Following last week’s 61-6 beatdown of defending Division I champion Smyrna, Quillin wasn’t sure if his team would be able to come out with the same energy Thursday night.

“It was such an emotional win for the kids last week, I was afraid that we would come in tonight and be a little flat,” Quillin said. “But, boy, we were not. They really came out excited and it was great to do it for the seniors. It was a good way to finish out for them.”

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