Chocowinity clinches conference title, undefeated season with big win

Published 7:38 pm Wednesday, October 31, 2018


For the Daily News

BATH — As the final buzzer sounded off, the Chocowinity Indians (6-0) huddled up in their end zone and jumped up and down in celebration as head coach Alan Swain followed them from the sideline with a sign that simply read, “Chocowinity Middle School; 2018 football undefeated conference champions.”

The Indians capped off their conference-winning season with a 64-0 victory over their conference rivals, the Bath Pirates (3-3). Chocowinity put up an enormous point margin against opponents during the season, scoring 274 points while allowing just six total points from its competition, leaving Swain very proud of his team.

“It’s unbelievable to just take a group of 7th and 8th graders and accomplish something that we haven’t done in the history of the school,” Swain said. “I thought last year was a good group of guys but this team right here is a pretty tough group.”

The Indians wasted no time scoring, as they exploded for 48 points in the first half. Jaiden Gibbs got things started for Chocowinity by scoring the first two touchdowns of the game with a couple of nifty moves, moving to his right on the first score and heading toward his left for the second, each from 30-plus yards out. Gibbs finished with three touchdowns for the game to lead his team.

From that point on, The Indians’ offensive barrage was spread throughout the team as Silas Pierce, Manvonte Deloach, Elyjaih Baldwin, Walker Hill and Jody Pierce each scored a touchdown apiece, turning their scoring play into their own personal highlight reel. Silas Pierce scored on the only touchdown reception of the game with a 50-plus yard catch, while Deloach followed it up with a long touchdown run, maneuvering past multiple Pirate defenders to his left to find the back of the end zone.

Baldwin and Hill followed it up with similar rushing touchdowns as both players danced around Bath defenders before ending up running down the left sideline into the end zone. Jody Pierce put on the finishing touches with a touchdown run of his own to secure the 64-0, title-clinching win, showing that there would be no quit in the Indians until the final buzzer sounded.

“We only gave up one touchdown all season and they were pretty confident heading into this game,” Swain said. “It would be easy for them to come in and relax so I’m real proud of them because I always like to tell them to leave no doubt and they came out and proved their point.”

Despite the lopsided loss, there are a lot of positives that the Bath Pirates can take away from it. Jacob Roberts was unfazed by the hard hits from the Indians defense and continued to push through the defensive line and gain positive yardage on every run. Quarterback Hunter Chrismon also played with a lot of heart by doing the best he can to pick up positive yardage by running through the teeth of Chocowinity’s defense.

Overall, Bath head coach Tony Mirabella is proud of how his team performed in the game and all season long. He hopes the mindset his players learned playing football, especially the 8th graders, will remain for the rest of their lives.

“We always talk about that this is our football family,” Mirabella said. “We always talk about God first and that we have each others back. I hope that the mentality we have in football is the mentality you have in the classroom and the same mentality you have in high school because it’s a mindset you got to have in life.”