Slow second half dooms Steers in loss to Rams
Chase Gilmore ran for three first-half touchdown touchdowns, but was held out for most of the second half due to an injury. The injury proved a major part in the outcome as the Steers offense were held to just 32 yards in the second half while Graham was outscored 20-0 by the Mineral Wells Rams in a 34-21 defeat at Ram Stadium on Friday night.
Without Gilmore in the backfield, the Graham offense behind sophomore quarterback Hunter Lanham had trouble moving the ball down the field.
With a light-to-moderate rain falling for the first few minutes to open the game, Graham senior defensive linemen Klayton Read gave the Steers offense the ball when he recovered a bobbled snap from Rams quarterback Drew Huff.
It took Lanham and the offense just a few plays to convert into points on Gilmore's 1-yard touchdown run. Mineral Wells scored the next two touchdowns to grab a 14-7 lead early in the second quarter, but the lead lasted a mere four minutes.
Gilmore scored two more touchdowns in the quarter to help the Steers take a 21-14 lead into the halftime break.
However, Mineral Wells grabbed a 27-21 advantage with 5:53 left in the third quarter off two Lanham interceptions and never looked back. The Steers defense led by Read, Will Hays, Zach Martin and Corey Ballew attempted to give the offense a chance with each recording multiple tackles on the night.
The Rams put the final nail in the coffin on a 13-yard touchdown with 1:28 remaning. The Steers outgained Mineral Wells 314-304, but committed 10 penalities in the loss.
Graham will face Brownwood next week at Newton Field. Both teams are looking for their first victory of the season, after the Lions fell to Snyder on Friday
For the rest of the story please see Wednesday's edition of The Graham Leader.