Prep Football: West Rowan 44, South Rowan 12
By Ryan Bisesi
MOUNT ULLA – After having one of its more prestigious streaks snapped, West Rowan went back to its patented brand of tenacious physical play that earned it its powerhouse reputation.
The Falcons held South Rowan to 20 yards on the ground and consistently harassed its quarterbacks to run away in a 44-12 victory. West bounced back after a 39-20 loss to Statesville that broke a 32-game NPC winning streak. West’s defensive front routinely broke into the backfield and answered the call as it was back to your regularly scheduled dominance.
“We needed that tonight,” West coach Scott Young said after the 300th win in school history. “We kind of jumped on them early the way the old, great Falcon teams do.”
West quarterback Tyler Stamp completed five of his first six passes and West (5-1, 1-1) scored 27 in a first quarter that lasted 50 minutes. Linebacker Logan Stoodley scooped up a fumble recovery and went 55 yards for the Falcons’ third defensive score of the year.
“It was actually a great play by our defensive line,” said Stoodley, who also had an interception. “It just happened to roll my way and I picked it up. It’s the greatest feeling.”
There were big offensive plays too. Desmond Jackson ran for 125 yards on 11 carries with three touchdowns. Daisean Reddick ran for 102 yards in a the highest-scoring game of the year for the Falcons.
“We had to take our lead back,” Reddick said. “We wanted to get back up after losing last week.”
Jackson’s seven-yard run for a score came five plays into the game. After South went three-and-out, Stamp threw to Jackson to get West past midfield. Two plays later, Reddick broke free and zig-zagged for a 36-yard run that concluded in the end zone. The Falcons ended up with 299 yards on the ground.
“I thought I was going to get hit so I bounced outside,” Reddick said. “I cut back in and had good blocking.”
On the Raiders’ second drive, Derrick Fortson got a sack on first down and Stoodley and Kiero Cuthbertson combined to bring quarterback Nathan Lambert down a play later.
“Sometimes it’s hard to match up with the strength and power they have up front,” Rollins said.
South (1-5, 1-1) took a blow when Lambert injured his left knee on the same play Stoodley scored. Lambert was helped off the field and didn’t return. Rollins said he didn’t think anything was torn in Lambert’s knee after doctors took a look. Sophomore Aaron Kennerly came in for the remainder and went 13 of 30 for 204 yards passing. Kennerly threw fourth-quarter touchdown passes to Tvadis Wesley and Josh Medlin.
“We’re so proud of kids like A-Rod who step in when he needs to step in,” Rollins said. “I can’t say enough about the kid. I have so much respect for him to come in as a sophomore and lead us down the field.”
Stoodley’s fumble recovery for touchdown made it 27-0 as West’s fourth score of the first quarter. Zack Russell added a 30-yard field goal before halftime to make it 30-0 at the break.
Jackson broke free for a 58-yard score and Reddick had a 49-yard run in the third quarter to complete the West scoring.
Tight end Jack Gallagher led West in receiving with three catches for 40 yards on a night where West tried to establish its passing game. Stamp had his second-straight triple-digit game with exactly 100 yards passing.
“We realized that if we’re making any kind of playoff run, we’re going to have to be able to throw the ball as well,” Stamp said. “Receivers were definitely getting open and it worked well.”
Wesley led the Raiders with 77 yards receiving.