Prep Football: West Rowan 48, Carson 0
By Bill Kiser
MOUNT ULLA ó West Rowan’s coaches have preached since the first day of practice the value of taking care of the football.
It took the first quarter of Friday night’s game against Carson for the Falcons to finally understand why.
West kicked its game into a higher gear, overcoming a sloppy start and racing past the Cougars 48-0 to remain undefeated in the North Piedmont Conference.
K.P. Parks ran for 198 yards and three touchdowns for the Falcons (6-1, 5-0), and West Rowan’s defense held Carson to just 53 yards total offense and recorded a pair of safeties in shutting out the Cougars for the third consecutive year.
The Falcons also got TD passes from both B.J. Sherrill and Jon Crucitti, a 5-yard TD run in the fourth quarter from backup Matt Bishop, and a 35-yard field goal and five extra-point kicks from Matt Turchin.
However, what West head coach Scott Young will remember most about Friday’s game aren’t the big numbers the Falcons piled up ó 19 first downs, 309 yards rushing, 459 yards of total offense ó but the mistakes they made in the first quarter that twice gave the Cougars (3-4, 2-3) chances to score.
West Rowan turned the ball over twice on its first two possessions ó Parks was stripped of the ball by Carson’s Scott Ashby on the third play from scrimmage, and Sherrill was picked off by John Mullis two plays into the next possession.
“We run five offensive plays and make two turnovers,” Young said. “That’s totally unacceptable. How can you win championships when you’re turning the ball over all the time?”
While the Falcons’ defense was stopping Carson ó an A.J. Little interception ended one drive, while the Cougars were held on downs inside West’s red zone on the next possession ó Young made sure West’s offense knew he wasn’t happy with the way they were playing.
“I told them I was sick of it,” Young said. “That’s not playing how we’re supposed to play … that’s not getting it done.”
The Falcons certainly got it done after that, beginning when Parks went untouched through the middle of the line on a 57-yard TD run on their first play of the second quarter.
After a bad snap on a Carson punt led to a safety, Parks added a 34-yard TD run with 8:04 left in the period, followed by Crucitti’s 59-yard halfback option pass to Jonathan Hill.
And when Turchin hit the 35-yard field goal with no time remaining, it put West Rowan ahead 26-0 at the half and on the way to its 27th consecutive win over a Rowan County school.
“We did what we were supposed to do,” Young said. “We don’t ask for much ó just do what you’re supposed to do, and everything will take care of itself.”
Sherrill hit Brantley Horton on a 4-yard TD pass on the Falcons’ first possession of the second half to push West’s lead to 33-0, then it added 15 unanswered points in the final quarter on 5-yard TD runs by Parks and Bishop, and Carson’s second safety.
“We saw a good football team out there tonight,” Carson head coach Mark Woody said. “They’re very good up front, and we had a hard time sustaining any consistency.”
NOTES: Sherrill threw for 91 yards on 9-of-17 completions, and ran for 29 more, but it was Crucitti that was the real “do-it-all” guy for the Falcons. He threw for 59 yards and one score, ran for 28 yards on six carries, caught four passes for 53 yards, averaged 43 yards per kick on a pair of punts, and even went deep on kickoff and punt returns. … West’s defense forced three Carson turnovers, all on interceptions. In addition to Little’s first half pickoff, the Falcons got interceptions from Austin Greenwood and defensive lineman Daniel Spainhour. … Shaun Warren led Carson with 52 yards rushing, but the team total was hurt by the two safeties, which cost minus-47 yards. … Ryan Jones went 5-of-12 for 46 yards passing for the Cougars, but he was picked off twice. Zach Gragg, harrased by the West defense, went 0-for-4 with an interception.
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