Prep Football: North Rowan 74, South Davidson 0
By Marny Hendrick
DENTON – A lot of adjectives apply to this one: dominating, record-breaking, total effort, balanced, lopsided, just to name a few.
It was a mismatch from the outset Friday night as the North Rowan Cavaliers secured second place in the YVC by rolling past South Davidson 74-0 at Griggs Stadium.
The outcome set a new school record for points by two full touchdowns and could have been much worse as North had three scores nullified by penalties. Equally impressive was the fact that the Cavs scored 11 touchdowns with five coming from defense and special teams.
It was a good win for us,” coach Joe Nixon stated. “I am really pleased with the way our guys played tonight and I thought they did it with class.”
The Cavs (8-3, 6-1) created eight turnovers in the game, five fumbles and three interceptions and made each of them pay off with a score. The most amazing performance on a night of defensive superlatives was turned in by sophomore defensive back Trae Clark.
He had a 50-yard interception score in the second period, a 75-yard kickoff return for a TD to open the second half, then snatched a fumble from the grasp of a Wildcat runner late in the quarter and ran 37 yards for another score. Add to that a second interception, plus his seven extra point kicks and it was a fairly good night for Mr. Clark.
“I just tried to make things happen and follow my blockers,” Clark said. He noted he had never had a defensive game like this one in his young life.
Big defensive tackle Cecil McCauley lived the dream as well with two fumble recoveries including a 61-yard true sprint for a touchdown midway in the first quarter. Mike Robinson added his own pick-six from 21 yards to close out a 54-0 first half.
North did enjoy some offensive success especially by halfback Jareke Chambers, who scored on runs of 40, 28 and 28 in the first half. Quarterback Alexis Archie hit Cameron Sifford for a 40-yard scoring pass while Raekwon Wynruit and Andre Cowan added scoring runs as well. The Cavs did not make or need a sustained drive all night as their six offensive TDs came on three plays or less. Four scoring drives only took a single play.
With a running clock in the second half, North did not score in the final period and was able to sustain a 10-play drive to wind the game down.
South Davidson came into their final regular season game short handed with only 23 players and used six freshmen incuding quarterback Corey Hartman. They had some bright spots but were undone by the 8 turnovers.
This was a big learning experience for our young guys,” interim Coach Kevin Bowers said, “North Rowan is such a taented team, and I wish them well in the playoffs.” The Wildcats (1-10, 1-6) ended an emotional season that saw the untimely death of head coach Mike Crowell in September.
“We did not win much, but our kids never gave up, ” Bowers said.
As for the Cavaliers, they now enter the 1AA state playoffs Friday with a high seed and a home game. “We have to put the regular season behind us and get ready week to week and try to make a run,” Nixon said.
Running back Chambers put it more precisely. “We have to go hard or go home.”•NOTES: The previous scoring record for North was 60-0 over North Moore. Friday’s game also marked the end of a great, 55-year career for referee Don Williams of Charlotte.
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