The Knights had shown flashes of being a good team, but until Friday, they hadn’t played a complete four quarters. Northern Nash finally turned that around, and it was no coincidence it earned its first victory of the season.
Northern Nash shut down Warren County in a 21-8 victory Friday, which also signaled the end of the team’s brutal stretch of four straight road games to begin the season.
“I thought up until this point, we had played well, but not for four quarters,” Northern Nash coach Randy Raper said. “(Friday), we did do that. … The kids were very excited. They’ve been working hard since August, and they surely deserved it.”
The Firebirds did themselves a big favor Friday at Roanoke Rapids – they played so well in the first half that their battered starters earned an entire half of rest. Southern Nash scored 50 points in the first half en route to a 50-27 victory, and the Firebirds’ starters were out for good with five minutes remaining in the second quarter.
Two more starters did go down, however. Quarterback Deon Lavender left with an injured ankle and lineman Francisco Trejo didn’t play.
Southern Nash coach Brian Foster was happy everyone had the chance to play and that the Firebirds have a much-needed bye this coming week.
“I’ve been on the other end (of blowouts), and I don’t like that,” Foster said. “I’m happy for my kids. You try to respect everybody you play, and we have 55 guys that work their tails off in practice that never see the field. It was nice they got a chance.”
The Cougars were dominated by Tarboro’s front eight in a 14-0 loss Friday night, and as a result, the Cougars’ offense was held to a standstill for much of the night.
SouthWest Edgecombe is working with a young offensive line, and the team hopes that its maturation will come quickly.
“We’ve got a young offensive line and they’re a work in progress,” Cougars coach Jonathan Cobb said. “You know, you give them an ‘A’ for effort. They’re trying. We just have got to keep developing.
“We’ll be all right. It’s a long season.”
The Vikings’ defense has been consistently good for most of this season, and they deservedly were the story in a 14-0 victory against SouthWest Edgecombe on Friday night.
But running back Radja Bobbitt has been just as consistent for the Vikings. The senior put up another 100-plus yard game and scored both of Tarboro’s touchdowns.
“Radja, he’s a tough kid,” Tarboro coach Jeff Craddock said. “You look at him, he’s not very tall, not very big, but you can see he runs as hard as anybody. Very rarely do you see – if you’re going to get him, you better tackle him from behind before he gets rolling.”
The Bulldogs forced four fumbles and created their first big scoring play of the season Friday, but still fell to Hertford County, 14-7.
After Khalil Macklin broke a 66-yard touchdown reception from Tyler Barrow in the second quarter, Hertford County completed an 82-yard pass for a score on the next possession.
Neither team scored in the second half.
Nash Central coach Kevin Crudup could not be reached for comment Saturday.
The Jaguars had quite a big edition to their lineup Friday night in a 56-20 loss at Walkertown.
Jesse Richardson – all of 6-foot-6, 460 pounds – played on the defensive line.
Rocky Mount Prep coach Don Reams said the team has been rounding Richardson into shape during the preseason, and the mammoth defender made an impact in the Jaguars’ fourth game.
“He did a pretty good job,” said Reams, whose team dropped to 1-3 overall. “They had to run away from him. He just takes up a lot of space. He is just a big person.”
Reams said the coaching staff will continue to work with Richardson on his footwork in hopes of him contributing soon on the offensive line.
North Edgecombe was hoping that it could catch Southeast Halifax off guard.
Trailing, 22-14, with fewer than two minutes to play, the Warriors called for a halfback pass.
Unforunately for North Edgecombe (1-2), the pitch to the halfback was fumbled in Southeast Halifax’s territory, ultimately ending the contest.
It was the story of North Edgecombe’s night.
The Warriors fell to 1-2 because they fumbled away the ball four times, and they could not recover a small bundle of the Trojans’ fumbles.
Whether it was a bad snap, ball security or handoffs that were not in sync, the Warriors gave away opportunities.
“They didn’t really stop our offense,” North Edgecombe coach Keith Parisher said. “We stopped ourselves.”
The Gryphons showcased both of their quarterbacks Friday night in a 21-7 loss to undefeated Greenville Rose.
Senior J.T. Smith finished 7-for-10 for 49 yards, while sophomore Joshua Carter was 5-for-8 for 28 yards.
Rocky Mount High coach Jason Battle said he wants to give both players time at the position.
“We feel like both of them are good, strong players,” Battle said. “We want to use them in different ways.”
Battle said Smith brings experience and knowledge to the position, while Carter is a inexperienced “gunslinger.”
Both performed well against a tough Greenville Rose defense, although Battle said the duo was forced to throw too much.
“Any time a team makes you one-dimensional, it’s tough,” Battle said. “If we throw that much, it’s a problem. Something has gone awry.”
A defense that allows seven points is impressive.
An eight-man defense that allows that number in two of three games might be on to something special.
Rocky Mount Academy’s 52-7 victory Friday against Raleigh St. David’s was another step in the right direction for coach B.W. Holt’s Eagles.
The team’s big test comes Friday when Raleigh World of God, one of the better programs in the state, visits Friday.