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Knights down Rebels for first 2-0 start in 10 years

VALE –– Richard Jackson ran for 108 yards and two touchdowns, Ethan Gram added 121 yards on the ground and North Lincoln scored three unanswered TDs to down West Lincoln 20-7 Friday night for its first 2-0 start since 2004.
Jackson’s first score answered a TD by the Rebels (1-1), who got a 3-yard TD run from Todric Anderson late in the third quarter. The senior wingback scored on back-to-back drives, the first a 10-yard run and the second from 11 yards out to give the Knights a 14-7 lead with 7:30 to play.
North Lincoln’s defense, which held the Rebels to a total of 150 yards rushing –– their fewest in more than a season –– didn’t allow West Lincoln to gain another yard after its score.
Its offense, meanwhile, scored on three consecutive drives, culminated by Matt Koe’s 1-yard run with 2:25 to play.
The Knights, who had 306 yards rushing and attempted only one pass, which was incomplete, had two takeaways while playing turnover-free football for the second straight week.
West Lincoln had third-and-goal from the 1 late in the second quarter, and a bad snap in the wildcat formation over the head of senior fullback Charles Mack George was recovered by Gram.
Caleb Sherrill picked off Noah Marsh with the Rebels in desperation mode to seal the deal.
Both teams missed field goals on their opening drives, and were about as even as could be at the break. West Lincoln, which was led by George’s 121 yards rushing, had 115 yards on the ground and 16 through the air at the break. North Lincoln, which looks for its first 3-0 start in school history against East Lincoln next week, had 129 yards, all rushing, at halftime.
The Rebels took the opening drive of the second half 76 yards in 17 plays and 7 minutes, 37 seconds, to break a scoreless game. Marsh, who was 4 of 8 passing for 53 yards and an interception, had three completions of eight or more yards on the drive, which ended with Anderson’s score.
From that point forward, the Rebels lost 4 yards while the Knights gained 177 and scored three times.

BELMONT –– Hours after committing to Michigan as a defensive end, Lincolnton senior Darian Roseboro used his 6-foot-5, 285-pound frame to bulldoze his way to a pair of scores and had the game-winning tackle on a two-point conversion as the Wolves held off the Red Raiders.
Roseboro rushed for 97 yards on 20 carries, and helped his team regroup after last week’s season-opening loss at North Lincoln.
Friday’s win was the first time since 2010 Lincolnton (1-1) defeated South Point.
Tanner Muse scored for the Red Raiders (0-2) on a 29-yard run with 1:18 remaining to pull them within a point at 14-13. South Point elected to go for the two-point conversion, but Roseboro clogged up the middle and tackled fullback Ryland Etherton well short of the goal line.
The Wolves unveiled a new offensive look, a straight T offense they call the “Big Bone.” Roseboro was one of the featured backs in the offense, leading the team in carries and yardage as South Point had a nightmare trying to bring him down.
Roseboro scored on a pair of 2-yard runs in the first half for a 14-0 Lincolnton lead. The smashmouth brand of football dominated that first half, with the Wolves running 39 plays to South Point’s nine. Lincolnton possessed the ball for 20 minutes, 17 seconds in the first half compared to 3:43 for South Point.
After the failed two-point conversion, Lincolnton’s Alex Rhyne recovered the onside kick, capping a night on which Rhyne served as the team’s calm quarterback for the full game. Rhyne again filled in for Jordon Easter, who missed a second straight game with a high ankle sprain. Freshman Cordel Littlejohn also saw time at quarterback last week but not this week.
Willie Cobb added 78 rushing yards on 15 carries and Tarus Dameron rushed for 30 yards on eight carries as part of Lincolnton’s 247-yard offensive night — all on the ground.
South Point finished with 246 yards — also all on the ground — led by Etherton’s 125 yards on 23 carries. Quarterback Jaquan Brooks had 51 yards on eight attempts.

DENVER –– Chazz Surratt threw for 219 yards and five touchdowns to four different receivers, and the Mustangs scored all of their points in the first half in the rout.
Surratt completed 25 of his 41 attempts and threw two interceptions. Sage Surratt had 10 catches for 105 yards and two TDs, Austin Buchanan caught a TD pass, Chris Tomberlin caught a TD pass and Cameron Dollar caught a TD pass as East Lincoln started its season 2-0 for the third straight year.
Last season’s first two wins were later forfeited for its use of an ineligible player.
Kamani Watts returned the opening kickoff of the second half 95 yards for a score to put the Charlotte-based Q Foundation (0-1) on the board. It scored all three of its TDs in the third quarter.
Sammie Cunningham led East Lincoln in rushing with 18 yards on four carries. As a team the Mustangs rushed only 12 times for 31 yards. 

Lincoln Times-News Sports Editor Ryan Herman, Gaston Gazette sports writer Phil Gardner, and East Lincoln statistician Jack O’Brien contributed to this roundup. For more on these games see Monday’s edition of the Lincoln Times-News.

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