Rams take ‘Flight’

Published 12:00 am Monday, September 6, 2004

CREEKSVILLE – For a shade over one full season, the Northampton-East football team just couldn’t seem to put it all together on the gridiron.

Mired in a slump that had seen the Rams without a win since the 2002 campaign and off to an 0-2 start this season, NCHS-East finally hit their stride here Friday night where Demontae Lassiter and Travis Mason combined for 252 rushing yards and five touchdowns to compliment a defensive effort that kept visiting First Flight High School out of the endzone as the Rams blanked their Dare County guests, 48-0, in non-conference action.

NCHS-East wasted little time in setting the tone for this rout as Quentin Shoulers returned the game’s opening kick-off 69 yards to paydirt. The conversion failed, but the Rams owned a 6-0 lead with the game only 14 seconds old.

Lassiter then took over. He touched the ball only six times in the first half, but turned three of those carries into touchdowns on scoring runs of 10, 37 and 10 yards. Lassiter finished with a game-high 139 rushing yards on just eight attempts.

Sandwiched in-between was a safety by the NCHS-East defense as Greg Boone, with help from Phillip Jacobs and Thomas Peoples, tackled Brandon Powell, the First Flight punter, in the endzone for a safety following a high snap over Powell’s head.

Mason (3 carries for 113 yards) scored the final TD of the first half for the Rams when, on a beautifully executed bootleg, the NCHS-East quarterback scrambled 33 yards to the endzone for a 36-0 halftime lead. That drive was set-up by a 46 pass from Mason to Marcell Deloatch – the only aerial the Rams threw for the entire game.

First Flight’s only scoring threat of the first half came late in the second quarter where the Nighthawks recovered a fumbled punt at the NCHS-East 21 yardline. But the Rams defense – anchored by the play of Keon Shoulders, John Dail, Melvin Rogers and Carlos Cumbo – stiffened and stopped the visitors. Shoulders’ interception on fourth down at his own 13 yardline ended the first half.

Sparked by back-to-back runs from Lassiter totaling 59 yards, the Rams punched in their opening possession of the second half. Chris Price capped that 5-play, 65-yard drive with his one-yard TD run at the 5:58 mark of the third quarter for a 42-0 lead.

Mason capped the rout with an 80-yard dash to paydirt with 2:24 left in the game. That score came after the NCHS-East defense stopped First Flight on downs at the Rams 17 yardline.

For the game, NCHS-East turned in 438 total yards. First Flight was limited to 108 total yards.

The Rams (1-2) travel to Northwest Halifax next Friday.