His team’s nickname is the Demons, and on Friday night, Mark Dogbah made life hell for the Peoria defense.
Dogbah racked up 281 rushing yards on 20 carries and scored four touchdowns to lead Phoenix Greenway to a 52-21 Division III victory over visiting Peoria.
With his performance, the senior eclipsed the 2,000-yard mark and became Greenway’s all-time single season rushing leader, surpassing the mark set by Wes Smith in 1999.
“I didn’t plan it, but it happened,” Dogbah said of the record. “I’m so happy. I’m about to go celebrate tomorrow.”
The guy they call “Mad Dog” looked like a greyhound out on the field, sprinting through holes and breaking several long runs, including a 55-yard touchdown on the third play of the second half that put Greenway (5-4) up 26-14.
That play would turn out to be the beginning of the end for Peoria’s (4-5) chances. On its next possession, it dropped a pass that was ruled to be a lateral, and Greenway senior D.J. Tice scooped the ball up near the 20-yard line and took it back to the end zone to make it 33-14.
Greenway’s defense continued its stout play from there, allowing just one late touchdown as the offense pulled away. Greenway outscored Peoria 33-7 in the second half.
“We’ve been through three games where we lost them right at the end,” Greenway coach K.J. Anthony said. “The kids didn’t want to let it come down to that tonight.”
Dogbah sat out the fourth quarter with the game already in hand, preventing him from adding to his yardage total. He has now gained 683 yards in his last two games, after posting 402 yards in a win against Phoenix Washington last week.
Even Anthony was in awe of his star running back after the game.
“Holy smokes, he got after it tonight, didn’t he?” Anthony said. “He’s just awesome when you hand him the ball.”