Monacan High football coach Jim Henderson pulled his captains together after last week’s loss and had a question.
“I asked if they had heard of Albert Einstein’s definition of insanity,” he said. “You can’t continue to do the same thing over and over and expect different results.”
The No. 8 Chiefs have been solid on defense most of the season, but have struggled at times to score in the second half. That included last week, when they had a 20-7 lead at halftime against Midlothian and lost 24-20.
Henderson changed some things in practice to simulate two halves, and the Chiefs responded with two good ones in a 41-0 victory over visiting Huguenot on Thursday that accomplished a couple of things.
Monacan (8-2), which went into the final week of the regular season third in points on the VHSL rating scale in top-heavy Class 4, Region B, may have done enough to become the No. 2 seed, likely behind Louisa and ahead of Eastern View and Dinwiddie. More importantly, it regained some balance after last week’s loss.
“I think we picked it up really well tonight,” said quarterback Stone Snyder, who had 187 yards and two touchdowns passing and 101 yards rushing. “We took a tough one last week. We needed that. That was very good for us actually. We needed some awakening to realize that teams from here on are going to be really good. We’ve got to play our best football.”
Henderson said he used more competitive drills during the first half of practice this week. The Chiefs did some conditioning, got some water and took what amounted to a halftime break, and went back at it.
After taking a 20-0 lead in the first half — Huguenot didn’t have a first down in seven possessions — Monacan scored 21 points in the second. That included an interception return for a touchdown by Elijah McLeod, who had a well-rounded game with three catches for 48 yards on offense.
Despite the rough night, the Falcons (4-6) likely will be the eighth and final seed in Class 4.
Snyder says he doesn’t pay much attention to stats — “Just the wins and losses,” he said — but playoff opponents surely will.
The senior, in his first year as the starting quarterback after starting at linebacker, is a load at 6-foot-3, 228 pounds. He went over 2,000 yards passing (2,003, 29 touchdowns, 12 interceptions) and already was over 1,000 yards rushing.
“I’ve got to rely on my teammates every week,” he said. “I can’t get those passing yards unless my receivers catch it, and I can’t get any rushing yards without my line. I’ve got the easy job.”
Snyder, who split the web between his index and middle fingers after hitting his hand on a helmet, hit Taylor Green on the same corner route for touchdowns of 34 and 20 yards in the first half. Green had four catches for 104 yards.
“I think we’ve got six guys with over 200 yards receiving and four touchdowns,” Henderson said. “They’re getting open, and Stone is hitting them. I think teams have to be so worried about him running the football it’s opening up some things on the back end. He’s able to exploit it.”
Huguenot 0 0 0 0 — 0
Monacan 6 14 14 7 — 41
MON—Addams 2 run (kick failed)
MON—Green 34 pass from Snyder (pass failed)
MON—Green 20 pass from Snyder (Snyder run)
MON—McLeod 47 interception return (Wells kick)
MON—Powell 29 run (Wells kick)
MON—Ellersbee 24 pass from Allen (Wells kick)
HUG: Tyler 4- -26, Ross 2-2, Kelley 3-1, Boyd 2-8, Crayton 5-4, Arthur 1-5, Tofoi 1- -5. MON: Branch 2-6, Powell 1-29, Snyder 15-101, Jeter 1-1, Jeter 2-14, Murphy 8-44, Addams 10-89, Ellersbee 1- -2.
HUG: Tyler 7-21-1-98, Arthur 1-4-0-16. MON: Snyder 13-21-1-187, Allen 2-3-1-41.
HUG: Gayles 2-35, Ross 2-23, Kelley 1-6, Walker 2-46, Crayton 1-4. MON: Powell 2-14, Green 4-104, McLeod 3-48, Jeter 1-4, Johnson 1-17, Addams 3-17, Ellersbee 1-24.