Jeff Hurndon Photography / Senior Keyante Green rushed for 80 yards and two touchdowns to lead top-ranked Eagle’s Landing Christian to a 33-0 win over Prince Avenue Christian on Friday in the Class A private school title game.
ATLANTA — Two weeks ago, Keyante Green was trying his best to be his normal, explosive self on the field against defending Class A champion Savannah Christian.
The quarterfinal game was arguably the biggest of top-ranked ELCA’s season. The Chargers knew that they had to beat championship-proven teams like Savannah Christian in order to qualify themselves for their shot at the title.
So Green wasn’t about to let this moment pass. However, after just his fifth carry of the game, Green walked off the field to the sideline and tossed his helmet down.
He was visibly frustrated because he knew he would no longer be visible on the field for that game. An ankle injury he suffered earlier in the season flared up again at the worst time.
A time when the Chargers were trying to make a run at a state title. For Green, a senior, this year would be his last chance to.
The Purdue commitment is one of the Southern Crescent’s most dynamic players when he’s healthy. But this year’s struggles through injuries left him feeling unsatisfied with his ability to contribute to his team.
“It was very frustrating for me to let myself stay out at times,” Green said. “I could’ve tried to play (against Savannah Christian) but I wanted to rested. I knew we would have more games to play.”
None of them were bigger than Friday’s Class A private school championship victory — a 33-0 route of Prince Avenue. For Green, it made the earlier season sacrifices seem worth while.
“This just feels amazing,” said Green, who had 80 yards rushing on 12 carries and two touchdowns. “I just wanted to stay in the game and handle the pain.”
The overmatched Wolverines scrapped and hustled to make sure that Green’s Chargers would have to work for every first half yard they got.
But it was Green who showed his determination early on. He scored ELCA’s lone first-half touchdown on a 23 yard run from the “Wildcat” formation on ELCA’s first offensive series. He did it while handing out a vicious stiff arm to two would-be tacklers.
And although the Chargers didn’t find the endzone again until the third quarter, Green’s first touchdown was a tone-setter — and a sign of things to come once they got untracked.
“We just said we were going to keep doing what we know to do,” Green said. “They fought us hard, but we were pushing ourselves to score. We wanted to be the team that made history.”