Playing on the road for the first time in the 2021 playoffs, the Monroe High football team fell to East Surry, 10-9, in the third round of the 2A state tournament on Friday

Monroe (8-2 final record) led 9-7 for the majority of the fourth quarter until East Surry kicked a field goal to make it 10-9 with under five minutes remaining. Monroe senior Shaleak Knotts took the ensuing kickoff 70 yards deep into East Surry territory, but Monroe ultimately missed the go-ahead field goal and East Surry was able to run out the clock.

The nine points were Monroe’s fewest in a game since falling to Marvin Ridge, 37-6, in Week 1. Since then, Monroe had won eight straight games by an average of 33.5 points per game.

Monroe’s defense held East Surry in check for most of the night. Cardinals quarterback Folger Boaz was 13-of-22 for 93 yards through the air, but he did rush for 123 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries.

The Redhawks, champions of the Rocky River Conference during the regular season, will lose just eight seniors.

Among the losses this offseason will be Knotts, a 4-star recruit who will play on scholarship at Maryland. In four seasons with the Redhawks, Knotts had more than 3,000 receiving yards and 42 touchdowns.

Monroe will return a handful of contributors when they return to the football field in 2022. Chief among them will be quarterback Khamoni Robinson, who threw more than 2,000 yards and 29 touchdowns against just four interceptions this season.