• 73°

2A Football Playoffs: Salisbury 35, East Burke 6

By Brian Pitts
sports@salisburypost.com
The East Burke-Salisbury playoff game Friday at Ludwig Stadium was billed as a tossup, and it was indeed a close game for one quarter. But the first-round showdown quickly turned into a smackdown ó and a runaway 35-6 victory for the Hornets.
The first quarter was a big tease for the visiting Cavaliers. They kept the game scoreless by stopping a fourth-and-1 run at the East 27 and by blocking a 25-yard field goal.
From that point on, though, the Hornets were unstoppable on offense and outstanding on defense, exploding in the second quarter for a 20-0 halftime lead. They picked up 22 first downs, ran for 397 yards and didn’t punt until the second half. Their defense permitted just eight first downs, 149 yards, didn’t allow a completion until the third and didn’t give up a third-down conversion until dying seconds.
“Hats off to our kids,”Salisbury coach Joe Pinyan said. “I don’t know if we’ve played a game that complete. We dominated on offense and defense. We ran pretty much at will.”
Salisbury’s offensive brilliance came from everywhere.
Romar Morris had 146 rushing yards on 19 carries, Ike Whitaker had 89 on 18 carries and QB John Knox had 87 on 17 carries. That trio got plenty of help from another efficient runner, with Dominique Dismuke chipping in 55 yards on six carries.
“Dismuke is probably our best runner between the tackles,” Pinyan said.
“(Dejoun Jones) did a good job of picking up some key blocks. I can’t say enough about our backs.”
Knox, who directed possessions for 11, 14 and 10 plays in the first half, kept the Cavs honest by hitting Riley Gallagher with his first two passes, resulting in 13- and 24-yard plays, the latter for a TD.
“Gallagher made a great catch on our sideline,” Pinyan said. “I thought, ‘Wow, what a great catch.”
The Salisbury defense wreaked havoc all night, with 98 of East’s 149 yards coming on two runs. East’s first play resulted in a 5-yard loss, thanks to Tre Jackson, one of three guys who play the Hornet position.
“All three of our Hornets ó Jackson, Darien Rankin and Justin Franklin ó played sensational on the edge,” Pinyan said.
When it was scoreless, East had first down at the Salisbury 42. Rankin threw a kink in the drive by planting the runner 7 yards back. QB Justin Lall tried to pick on Joseph Figueroa with deep fades, but Figueroa was in perfect position each time.
“Darien’s done that all year. He’s just a tremendous athlete,” Pinyan said.
“Figueroa, that’s a tough little cookie. He never takes a play off.”
Kavari Hillie made a tackle in the backfield when East was inside the Salisbury 10 and threatening to cut into Salisbury’s 14-0 lead.
Figueroa’s pass defense foiled the next play. East faked a 30-yard field goal, but Rankin chased down Lall as he looked to pass and stripped the ball in the process.
“And Kavari’s just a sophomore,” Pinyan said.
Midway through the third quarter, East had more fumbles (five) than first downs (four).
“We’re a better team than what we showed tonight,” East Burke coach Mike Biggerstaff said. “Not to take anything away from coach Pinyan’s team because they were well prepared and played hard.”
 

Comments

Comments closed.

Crime

Man charged for stowing away on Norfolk Southern train, impeding railroad operations

Local

Group will protest treatment of Georgia woman during 2019 traffic stop

Crime

Man overdoses at Piedmont Correctional Institute

Crime

Sheriff’s Office: Two men escape from jail, found in bushes on Fulton Street

Ask Us

Ask Us: When will North Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue be resurfaced?

Local

Political Notebook: Rowan’s lawmakers pass 140 bills into the opposite chamber before deadline

Local

Police chief to present use of force policy; city manager to present 2021-22 budget

Crime

Blotter: Rockwell man arrested on charges of felony larceny, possession of stolen vehicle

Coronavirus

CDC director says mask turnaround based solely on science

News

Catawba College hosts three in-person commencement ceremonies

Local

With high case loads causing numerous staff departures, Child Protective Services seeks more positions

Education

Livingstone College graduates celebrate ‘crossing the finish line’ during commencement celebration

Coronavirus

Rowan sees 4 new COVID-19 deaths as mask mandate lifted, vaccines administered continue decline

Local

Spencer is latest town updating its development ordinance

Local

Salisbury native Kristy Woodson Harvey makes NY Times bestseller list

Local

Board of Commissioners will convene for third time in May

Business

Biz Roundup: Salisbury, Kannapolis among recipients of Region of Excellence Awards

Local

Cheerleading team competes at Disney

Education

Salisbury High to celebrate football, swimming champions with parade

High School

High school girls soccer: Isley, Webb lead all-county team

Local

Spencer awarded $10,000 to develop trails at Stanback Forest

Books

‘Tails and Tales’ coming to library this summer

Local

Public Records: March Deeds

Entertainment

Salisbury Symphony’s ‘Return to the Concert Hall’ available May 24-31