On homecoming night at Lincolnton High School, it was a new kid on the block that everyone will remember.
Freshman quarterback Mardriekus Mayfield completed his first six passes, including three for touchdowns, en route to a 26-14 win over the Chase Trojans at Battleground Memorial Stadium.
Mayfield, just called up from the jayvee team earlier in the week, was filling in for the injured Zack Gibson. Gibson strained a knee ligament a week ago against West Lincoln and was unable to suit up Friday night.
The young Mayfield showed no fear stepping up to the varsity level. His first pass attempt was complete to senior receiver Edwin Barber for an eight-yard pick up. A couple plays later, he found junior Demory Williams with a 39-yard scoring strike, giving the Wolves a 6-0 lead.
On the Wolves next possession came the play of the night. Mayfield dropped back and heaved a pass to Shane Faw racing down the visiting sideline. Faw out ran the Trojan defensive back and made the catch in stride for a 79-yard touchdown play.
Mayfield`s throw traveled 45 to 50 yards in the air and was right on target to the streaking Faw. After the two point conversion attempt failed, the Wolves were up 12-0.
Later in the first half, Lincolnton would get on the board again. Running back Darrell Friday scored from three yards out. George Ramirez added the extra point, and the Wolves took a comfortable 19-0 lead into the halftime break.
The second half started much like the first. Mayfield stayed hot at the quarterback position, connecting on his first two passes. The freshman found senior tight end Dustin Metts for 15 yards and a key first down. Later in the drive, Mayfield would connect with Williams again for another score. This time from 40 yards out. Ramirez again added the point after, and the Wolves led 26-0.
The Trojans got on the board late in the third quarter. Tight end Jamal Gary hauled in a nine-yard scoring pass from Josh White. Ridge Laney kicked the extra point to cut the Lincolnton lead to 28-7.
Chase added a late touchdown as well. Running back Tarrik Logan scored on a three-yard run and Laney again added the point after to reach the final margin of 26-14.
Mayfield finished the game completing six of eight passes for 187 yards and three touchdowns. The Wolves were led on the ground by Darrell Friday. Friday gained 83 yards on 15 carries. Dusty Friday added 44 yards on nine carries for Lincolnton.
Chase was led by tailback Anthony Wingo. Wingo ran for 121 yards on 23 carries for the Trojans. The Lincolnton defense held the Trojans to 49 yards passing as quarterback Josh White connected on only four of 16 attempts and was picked off once. Derek Butler had the interception for the Wolves.
Lincolnton coach Scott Cloninger was pleased with his team`s effort. “The first half was one of the best halves we`ve played defensively”, Cloninger said. When asked about the performance of his substitute quarterback, Cloninger said “It was a pleasant surprise. I know he has a lot of talent and he can throw the ball well. He has a lot of confidence in himself.”
Cloninger also noted that Mayfield was put in a tough situation, and the team knew that and rallied around him to help as much as they could. Cloninger also said that Gibson should be available to start next Friday, but the team will keep Mayfield on varsity until Gibson is 100 percent.
It was a big night for the Faw family. Not only did Shane catch a 79-yard pass for a touchdown, his sister Shonda was crowned homecoming queen during the halftime ceremonies.
With the win, the Wolves improve to 2-0 in Midwest 2A conference play, and 4-2 overall. Chase falls to 0-2 in the conference and 1-5 overall. Next week, Lincolnton travels to Bunker Hill while the Trojans will be at home to take on Bandys.
Wideout Demory Williams had a homecoming night to remember reeling in a 39-yard touchdown pass and a 40-yard touchdown pass. He finished the game catching three passes for 96 yards against the Trojans. Joseph Brymer / LTN Photo
by David Keever