Week 2 kicks off tonightPublished 7:35pm Thursday, August 29, 2013
It was a wild start to what’s expected to be a wild year as thunderstorms wreaked havoc on Week 1 of the prep season last Friday. Several teams were forced to take long breaks in the action, with none having a longer hiatus than Southside, who began its game against North Duplin on Friday and didn’t finish until Monday.
Despite a pause in the action, Northside was able to leg out a win in its opener and will look to turn two on the road tonight against North Duplin, who held off Southside on Monday.
Plymouth’s opener was washed out completely and the Vikings will kick off their season tonight against a Riverside team that won a thriller against Ayden-Grifton.
South Creek fended off Perquimans to win a season opener for the first time in school history and hopes to carry that momentum on the road in tonight’s contest at North Pitt.
Here’s a look at the Week 2 matchups.
Northside (1-0) at North Duplin (1-0) at 7:30 p.m.
The Panthers opened the season in impressive fashion as they blew past Creswell 43-6. Senior running back Antonio Woods ran for a touchdown on offense and returned an interception for a score on defense, while QB Malik Slade and running backs Noel Howson and Patrick Moore each reached the end zone in the romp.
“It’s always good to get that first win under your belt and be 1-0,” Northside coach Keith Boyd said. “Going back and looking at the film we saw some things that we did well and we saw some things that we need to work on.”
The Northside defense, led by Dajuan Jones, Austin Gambriel and Rockne Butler, looked just as strong as the offense, holding the Creswell attack to six points. The Panthers will need a similar effort tonight as it faces a tough North Duplin option offense.
“When you face the option on defense you have to play assignment football,” Boyd said. “Luckily for us, because we run the option so much ourselves, our kids understand that because they have been on the flip side of running it.”
Southside (0-1) at Rosewood (0-1) at 7:30 p.m.
The Seahawks didn’t have too long to dwell on their Week 1 27-12 loss to North Duplin as the game was completed on Monday night.
Southside will return to action on the road tonight against a Rosewood team that fell 32-21 to C.B. Aycock last week.
Against Duplin, Southside got a TD reception from Lawrence Brown and TD run from Donshae Miller and key for the Seahawks is to build on the positives from their opener and correct some of the mistakes as soon as possible.
“I think we played much better in the second half (against North Duplin),” Carrow said. “We were much more aggressive Monday then we were on Friday. The defense was much better. Offensively, we need to execute better.”
Tightening up will be key tonight against an Eagles team that advanced to the third round of the playoffs a year ago.
“They have some very athletic kids,” Carrow said. “On offense, they’re doing kind of the same stuff we’re trying to do here as far as running the wing-T out of the ’gun and will use a bunch of different formations.”
“… Defensively, we just have to execute and tackle and offensively we need to be aggressive and execute the way we should.”
Riverside (1-0) at Plymouth (0-0) at 7:30 p.m.
The Knights got a spirited win in their first game of the year as they rallied back from a 20-15 fourth-quarter deficit to pull out a 27-20 victory over Ayden-Grifton.
Senior linebacker Daniel Everett picked two passes and returned one for a score, while Jeremiah Wilson ripped off a 50-plus yard touchdown run and threw a TD pass to Clay Wagner.
“It was a pretty good Week 1,” Riverside coach Asim McGill said. “Anytime you beat a team like Ayden-Grifton that’s a big time win.”
Riverside will look to capture another big time win tonight as it travels to Plymouth to face the defending 1-A state champion Vikings.
Plymouth’s season opener against Farmville Central was rained out last Friday, however, the two teams are no strangers to each other and have played twice in preseason scrimmages this summer.
“(Plymouth coach) Robert Cody is going to do what he’s going to do,” McGill said. “But he’s actually put in some single wing stuff out of the shotgun and had some success with it. So we have to see if we’re going to see some single wing or his tradition wing-T. It makes it hard to prepare for the game.”
Cody said that after seeing the Knights at jamborees his team knows it’s going to be in for a fight.
“We played them in scrimmages and they were really, really good. We have to be ready to play,” Cody said. “Their defense is really good, especially their linebacker (Everett), he’s really tough. They have a good defensive line.
“Offensively, they throw the ball a lot and if you make a mistake in coverage they get bust one on you.”
South Creek (1-0) at North Pitt (0-1) at 7:30 p.m.
Despite not having starting quarterback Brandon Battle, the Aaron Little-led Cougars knocked off Perquimans 30-27 last week to win their first season opener in the school’s four-year history.
“It’s the first time we’ve been 1-0, that’s a big deal,” South Creek coach Jeremy Jones said. “It gives us some good footing early on.”
Little, who was starting his first varsity game at QB, drew praise from Jones after running for a score and throwing two TD passes.
“We were happy with him,” Jones said. “He competed and came in did what we asked him to do and did it well.”
Romalik Parker caught a TD pass for South Creek and scored one on the ground to lead the offense.
South Creek’s defense looked strong at times too and must be prepared for a physical 2-A North Pitt that is coming off of a 36-15 loss to D.H. Conley.
“We know they’re going to run the ball and run iso in every gap they can run in,” Jones said. “They got some big physical backs. … We have to stop the run game. If we can slow the run game down and get a few punts we can be in good shape.”