Special to LTN
CATAWBA — The third week of the season was a lot like the first two for East Lincoln quarterback Garrett Young.
The Mustangs’ record-setting quarterback one-upped his single-game record for passing yards with a 364-yard effort, extended his career passing yardage record beyond 4,000 yards and threw three touchdown passes in East Lincoln’s 48-20 victory against Bandys on Friday.
For the senior quarterback, the numbers are nice, but there’s one record that is most important to him: 3-0.
“I was hoping we would be 3-0,” said Young, who surpassed 1,000 yards on the season. “The passing yards, that’ll come, but the main thing is being 3-0.”
Young completed 15 of 24 passes, spreading the ball around to five different receivers. On the season, he has nine touchdown tosses without an interception.
“We’ve been out there early getting the routes down, getting everything fluid, executing and getting everybody in the right spot and it’s starting to pay off now,” Young said. “We’ve all been working hard. I just have to get the ball to the receivers and let them run.”
Young did that early and often against the Trojans (2-1).
After Bandys fumbled the opening kickoff, Marquis Pharr scored from 15 yards to give East Lincoln a 7-0 lead less than 30 seconds into the game.
Later in the quarter, facing a third-and-5 at its own 11, East Lincoln turned to Young and he delivered a strike into the arms of Jesse Earnhardt, who was streaking down the sideline. Earnhardt raced 89 yards untouched for a 14-0 advantage.
But Bandys recovered and tied the game with 7:38 left in the half with two TD passes from Anthony Toscano.
Then it was Tyler Brock’s time to shine for the Mustangs (3-0). The 6-foot-4-inch senior receiver leaped over and around Bandys defenders for a pair of catches totaling 59 yards and capped off the drive with a 24-yard touchdown catch — the first of two for him on the night.
“They had the momentum,” East Lincoln coach Mike Byus said of Bandys’ first half surge. “Brock had a couple of really good catches on that drive that got us up one (touchdown) and we came back and were able to stick that second one in there and that was big getting up two scores going into the half.”
Bandys wouldn’t get any closer in the second half as the Mustangs turned to their ground game. Behind the punishing running of Pharr (15 carries, 106 yards) and Domonique Smith (10-41, TD), East Lincoln piled up 122 of its 169 rushing yards in the second half. Scott McMichael scored from three yards and Chaz Surratt (five receptions, 91 yards) ran in the final score from four yards.
“Garrett is blessed with some good wideouts and those wideouts are blessed to have Garrett,” Byus said. “So it’s a good mix. We ran the ball a little bit better tonight. I’m very pleased with him. Obviously, we have to try to remain as balanced as we can while utilizing the talents that we have this year. That’s the big thing.”
East Lincoln, which is 3-0 for the first time under Byus, travels to East Gaston this week before opening conference play the following week at home against Bessemer City.