Hornets display 57 seconds of total noise
The prep football notebook …
Salisbury High wanted to honor Salisbury Post sports editor Ronnie Gallagher, who died Aug. 30, but it chose a means that was the opposite of the moments-of-silence tributes at stadiums around the county.
The game plan at Salisbury for its home game against West Rowan called for 57 seconds of total noise, one loud second for each year that Gallagher, who would’ve turned 58 in October, lived.
So the scoreboard clock was set at 57 seconds prior to kickoff at Ludwig Stadium, and with former principal/P.A. man Windsor Eagle serving as head cheerleader, Salisbury and West fans managed to cheer and clap and yell for the full 57 seconds.
TOUGH SCHEDULE: Salisbury (0-3) lost to West 55-0, the Hornets already fell to 3As East Rowan and Carson, and it will be a shock if Salisbury gets its first win against either 4A Lake Norman (Friday’s opponent), powerful 3A South Iredell or 4A Southeast Guilford.
In other words, it’s likely that Salisbury will head into CCC play with an 0-6 overall record.
“It’s not the non-conference schedule I would have picked because we’re not going to see very many 2As as strong as West, East and Carson,” first-year head coach Ryan Crowder said. “We’re playing up against bigger schools, and we just have to grow up quickly. The good news is that in the CCC standings, we’re still 0-0. Maybe we can do what Thomasville has done a lot of times and finish strong after a slow start.”
SNOWBALL: Salisbury-West was actually scoreless for nearly eight minutes, but then Salisbury mistakes started piling up.
“Just a few big plays,” Crowder said. “It should’ve been 14-7 or 7-7 at halftime.”
Instead it was 28-0.
A muffed punt here, a mental mistake there, and a blown coverage here, and it just got completely out of hand as the Hornets suffered their worst loss ever.
“We had some guys that kept going hard and competing right to the end, but it takes all 11,” Crowder said.
Willie Clark ran hard for the Hornets. QB Riley Myers had a 39-yard run. Clint Comadoll, Isaiah Little and Jordan Oglesby were involved in sacks.
“Famous” Amos Duncan, West’s No. 3 tailback, scored twice against the Hornets. West also got a 50-yard run by Danny Flanagan, the backup fullback.
“Flanagan leads the world in yards per carry,” West coach Scott Young said with a smile.
DEFENSE: In the 55-0 rout of Salisbury, West (2-1) pitched a shutout after allowing 62 points in its first two games.
“The defensive unit as a whole played with a lot more effort,” coordinator Lee Linville said. “Technique-wise and intensity-wise we were better, and we got three turnovers.”
Lineman Teoz Mauney, linebacker Nick Collins and hard-hitting safeties Najee Tucker and Zeke Blackwood had excellent games.
“Our cornerbacks aren’t getting beat deep as much as last year,” Linville said. “That’s allowed our safeties to run to the ball and be a factor in the run game.”
Tucker got his second pick of the season, while Collins got his first. Blackwood recovered Salisbury’s muffed punt.
OFFENSE: Young figured the defense might have to carry the lion’s share of the load early while the offense learned, but West’s offense is at the top of most of the county stats.
Harrison Baucom has increased his passing yardage every game, even though West had some drops against Salisbury.
Baucom had 185 passing yards Friday, a figure West surpassed in only one game all last season.
“We threw the football with a lot of success against Salisbury,” Young said. “Getting (receiver) Chris Patterson back was a difference-maker, and Baucom was lights-out. Offensively, we’re well ahead of where I thought we’d be at this time.”
SPECIAL TEAMS: Salisbury didn’t allow Tyler Kennedy to do any damage in the return game, but Raykwon Torrence had a big punt return to the Salisbury 16.
Kennedy contributed up a first down when he took the snap as the up-man in punt formation and barreled for 6 yards.
Zack Russell was 7-for-8 on PATs (one was blocked).
MOVING FORWARD: West has improved each week. Now it has a bye week.
“The challenge for us this week is to continue to get better when we don’t have a game,” Young said. “That comes from within.”
Kenyon Coney, Xavier Robinson, Wesley Jefferies and Jake Pritchard all forced fumbles for sixth-ranked North in Friday’s 39-33 win at Statesville. North coach Joe Nixon commended the play of Pritchard and the offensive line, which paved the way for a pair of 100-yard rushing games by Jareke Chambers and Kasaun Coney.
“The o-line has its best game of the year,” Nixon said.
SAKIL THE THRILL: Junior receiver Sakil Harrison caught seven passes for 98 yards. Harrison caught one touchdown pass to give him three for the season along with 201 receiving yards.
BREAKING THE ICE: North (3-0) plays host to 4A Davie on Friday. North hasn’t played a 4A team since 2005 when South Rowan was still 4A. The last time it played Davie was 1984 in a 16-9 defeat against the War Eagles.
“They’re well-coached and physical,” Nixon said. “They’re real good at what they do offensively.”
KICKING IT: Nixon credited kicker Dylan Auten, who converted three extra points and was sound in the punting game.
Jackson Park United Methodist Church in Kannapolis volunteers several weekends a year to feed the overnight guests at Rowan Helping Ministries dinner on Saturday and Sunday breakfast, and they also help with laundering the guest’s clothing.
JP Methodist missions chairperson Kim Roberts is a leader in that effort, as are JP Methodist youth leader Hunter Fuller and his wife, Lori.
The upcoming weekend is one of those in which JP Methodist was scheduled to serve, but Fuller will be out of town He’ll be with his son, Tyler, a South receiver/DB, and South tight end Matt Honeycutt for an open house and a baseball camp at Western Carolina.
There was some thought about having to cancel in Fuller’s absence, but members of the South football team and their parents volunteered to carry on the work.
A half-dozen South parents will cook the meals for Rowan Helping Ministries, while players will do the serving. Players and South managers will help with the laundry.
“I think it’s great that a high school football team/coaches/parents would take this on to give back to their community,” Roberts said.
HURTING: A couple of South’s big linemen — Matthew Milem and Andrew Mauldin — are banged up.
SPC: Coming off its bye week, South (0-2) opens SPC play at home against Northwest Cabarrus on Friday. The schools have played in each of the last six seasons, with NWC winning five.
There’s no team in the nation with a more balanced offense than East (1-1), which averaged 155.5 passing yards and 155.5 rushing yards in its first two games.
Obviously, the passing yards are the surprise.
In its 32-0 win against Salisbury, East threw for 198 yards, the most passing yards in a game by the Mustangs since Shawn Eagle threw for a school-record 301 yards, mostly to Trey Holmes, Ben DeCelle and Wayne Parker, in a 37-29 win against Northwest Cabarrus in 2007.
East junior Samuel Wyrick has thrown for 1,683 yards in his career and has thrown 18 TD passes.
GREAT START: East junior Seth Wyrick, Samuel’s twin, has produced over 100 receiving yards in each of East’s first two games.
He’s the first Mustang with back-to-back 100-yard receiving games since 1997, when Nick Heard was on the loose.
Heard had an incredible 227-yard receiving game against Sun Valley to finish the ‘97 regular season — and then had 133 yards against South Caldwell in the first round of the playoffs.
NEW RIVAL: Coming off its bye week, East travels to Cox Mill on Friday to start SPC play. East has split two previous meetings with the Cabarrus school. East beat the Chargers in 2009 but lost to them in 2010.
Coming off its bye week, Carson (1-1) plays at Central Cabarrus, one of the SPC favorites, on Friday.
Carson will be playing Central’s Vikings for the first time.
All-time, Carson is 4-10 against Cabarrus schools. including 1-4 against NW Cabarrus, 1-3 against Hickory Ridge, 2-2 against Robinson and 0-1 against Concord.
Carson has not played A.L. Brown, Mount Pleasant or Cox Mill.
New Carson coach Joe Pinyan never coached against Central Cabarrus during his 10 seasons at Salisbury, and in fact, has coached only once against a Cabarrus school — a Salisbury playoff loss to Mount Pleasant in 2005.
MILESTONE: Carson junior running back Brandon Sloop is only 11 yards away from 2,500 rushing yards for his career.
That’s a milestone that’s been reached by only 21 Rowan rushers in the modern era, including Carson’s Shaun Warren; West’s K.P. Parks, Dinkin Miller, Wade Moore and Joe Jackson; Salisbury’s Dario Hamilton, Romar Morris, Tyris Davidson, Justin Ruffin, Dominique Dismuke and Leonard Atkins; North’s Mark Sturgis, Darryl Jackson, Bennie Geter and Nathanial Hyde; South’s Greg Poole and Michael Ramseur, and East’s Cal Hayes Jr.
Thomas Lowe (East and South), Darius Beaty (Salisbury and South) and Max Allen (East and Salisbury) are 2,500 rushers who got yards at more than one school.
Players of the week for the Wonders in the 7-0 win against Weddington were announced.
Tackle Jamel Logan, who had 31/2 sacks, was named defensive player of the week. DBs Khari Wilkes, who had a huge pick, and Kenon Jones, who scored the game’s lone TD, were in the running.
Running back Sandon McCoy, who carried the rushing load with 100-plus yards, was named offensive player of the week. McCoy is the son of former South Rowan athlete Spencer McCoy.
Malik Fowler, who blocked a field goal, was named special teams player of the week.
Middle linebacker Kyrell Williamson, whose forced fumble led to the game’s only TD, was honored as “Hitman of the Week.”
“Hawg of the Week” was left tackle Kenny Halstenberg.
BETTER START: Brown learned some lessons from a fatally slow start against Concord.
“Coach (Noah) Lyon told us to start the game with attitude,” senior defensive end Christian Carter said. “That’s what we did. We came right out and hit them in the mouth.”
Seth Dunn is 3-for-3. He’s had a long scoring reception in each of Davie’s first three games. Dunn’s four catches have accounted, believe it or not, for 194 yards.
“He has game-breaking speed,” Davie coach Devore Holman said.
QB1: Davie (1-2) struggled to throw the ball consistently in its first two games, but Parker Correll broke out in a 53-10 romp against Lexington, completing 10 of 15 passes for 174 yards and two scores. Obviously, that’s going to be a key for Davie. Davie knows it can run the ball with Cade Carney, who already has 400 rushing yards. If the War Eagles can run or throw, they’re going to be a problem for everyone.
“Parker is coming along,” Holman said. “We asked him to be poised and run our offense, and he’s doing just that.”
No. 1: Holman got his first win as a varsity head coach. He is the nephew of the late Baxter Holman, who was a head coach at Livingstone. Holman will lead Davie in a big game at North Rowan Friday.
NO SWEAT: Defensive lineman Bobby Sweat scooped a fumble and scored against Lexington. As the first member of Davie’s SAW Club (Scoring in Alternative Ways), Sweat will be treated to buffalo wings every Monday the rest of the season.
FIRST WIN: Davie’s jayvees beat Lexington 26-6 for their first victory.
Mike London, Ryan Bisesi, Marny Hendrick and Brian Pitts contributed to the notebook.