CHRISTIANSBURG — Ever since they installed field turf at their stadium, Christiansburg High School has been a popular place for area teams looking to find a place to play their postseason games when their fields were not in the best of shape. This postseason, however, the field may not be available due to the Blue Demons needing it.
Christiansburg running back Stephan Myrthil ran for 124 yards and two touchdowns while also scoring another touchdown on defense with a fumble recovery as the Blue Demons topped Patrick Henry, 37-14, on Friday night in Christiansburg.
With the win, Christiansburg (7-1, 3-1) keeps its stranglehold on the top spot in the Region 3D playoff points standings with two games left in the regular season, putting the Blue Demons in position to host multiple playoff games beginning next month.
“My five-year goal when I got here was to host a playoff game in Year 4, but COVID kind of hurt that,” Christiansburg coach Alex Wilkens said. “This puts us on pace for our goals, and we play well at home. We got a great community that loves our kids.”
Patrick Henry (6-2, 3-1) got off to a good start Friday night, advancing into Christiansburg territory on its first two offensive possessions. Both times, however, the Blue Demons stopped the Patriots on fourth-down plays, ending PH’s hopes for an early lead.
“Great teams and great defenses find a way to get off the field,” Wilkens said. “We were really proud of those stops early, and it probably took a little wind out of their sails.”
Christiansburg’s offense got things going in the second quarter, completing a nine-play, 65-yard drive with a 6-yard TD run from Myrthil to make it 7-0 at the 10:03 mark of the period.
Myrthil, or better known as “Smiley” by his teammates, found his way back in the end zone less than two minutes later from his linebacker position. On third and long, PH quarterback Joey Beasley was pressured out of the pocket and eventually stripped of the ball from behind by the Blue Demons’ Dishon Garrison. Myrthil did the rest, picking up the loose ball at the PH 43 and returning for a score to double the lead to 14-0.
“We went on a blitz call, and we knew the quarterback wasn’t that mobile and he’s not going to run out of the pocket like that. Our D-line stripped it and we’ve been practicing scoop and score all week, so when I saw the ball come out, I picked it up and ran to the house,” Myrthil said.
The defense got another score later in the quarter for the Blue Demons. After Christiansburg punter Drew Lloyd booted a 54-yard punt that pinned PH at their own 6-yard line, a shotgun snap from center rolled past Beasley all the way through the end zone for a safety, making it 16-0 with 3:13 left in the first half.
The Blue Demons’ special teams got into the act to open the second half when Christiansburg’s Jaxson Clarke returned the third quarter kickoff 62 yards to the PH 11. Five plays later, Christiansburg quarterback Casey Graham scored on 1-yard sneak up the middle to push the advantage to 23-0.
The Patriots finally got on the board on the ensuing kickoff when Taeshaun Webb returned the kick 91 yards for a touchdown. A successful two-point conversion followed making the score 23-8, but that’s as close as PH would get the rest of the night.
“Bottom line is they physically beat us,” Patrick Henry coach Alan Fiddler.
After the touchdown on the kickoff return, the Christiansburg ground game took over. Myrthil scored his second offensive touchdown of the night on a 9-yard run on the first play of the fourth quarter, and backfield running mate Kenyon Johnson-Buchannon capped the Blue Demon scoring with an 11-yard TD run with 4:28 left to make it 36-8.
“That’s all we do with every team,” Myrthil said. “Our O-line is the best out here and the best in the valley right now.”