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Builders feast on Chowan mistakes

MURFREESBORO – Rebuilding football teams have to play near perfect.

Saturday afternoon Chowan gave solid effort, but suffered five turnovers as the Braves dropped a 28-14 decision to Newport News Apprentice School.

&uot;We’re not good enough to overcome that many turnovers,&uot; first-year skipper Lorick Atkinson said. &uot;Again, I was pleased with the effort we gave, but this team cannot turn the ball over the way we did today.&uot;

Senior quarterback Taylor Furlough had two passes picked off in the first half. The Builder returned one for a touchdown and the other to the one-yardline to help Newport News build a 21-7 halftime lead.

Both teams had solid drives in the first quarter.

Chowan took the opening kickoff and drove 77 yards on 11 plays to take the early lead.

Furlough had two key pass plays on the drive, hitting Josh Floyd for gains of 11 and 15 yards before hitting the same receiver for a 27-yard scoring strike on fourth-and-three. Nick Alejandro added the PAT and Chowan led 7-0.

Late in the opening quarter, the Builders set up shop at the Chowan 49-yardline. Newport News took seven plays to cover that territory, scoring on an 18-yard pass from Robby Goodman to Albert Potts. Hank Schmidt added the point after to deadlock the score at 7-all.

On the next Braves’ drive, Andre Carrington intercepted a Furlough pass and returned it to the Chowan one before Darell Carr knocked him out of bounds.

A holding penalty moved the ball to the 11-yardline, but Goodman immediately found Travis Reid for the touchdown. Schmidt’s PAT made it 14-7 in favor of the Builders.

Chowan got a break midway through the second quarter when a Schmidt mishandled a snap on a punt and the Braves got the ball on the 32-yardline.

On the second play after the Braves’ took possession, Furlough was tackled and fumbled. Shamone Williams recovered the fumble, stopping the Chowan drive.

Late in the half, Chowan faced a third-and-seven and Furlough attempted a pass which was picked off and returned for a touchdown by Franko Smith. Schmidt’s PAT made it 21-7 at the intermission.

A short field set up Newport News’ next score. A personal foul penalty on a punt gave the Builders possession on the Chowan 47-yardline. The Builders marched those 47 yards on seven plays, capped by a four-yard Theo Bryant run. Schmidt’s point after gave the Builders a 28-7 lead.

The next Chowan drive saw the Braves march deep into Newport News territory. With backup quarterback Kevin Helmlinger calling the signals, the Braves drove behind solid running back Jack Ross and a 35-yard completion from Helmlinger to Taurus Riddick.

The drive stalled at the Newport News 27-yardline where Helmlinger’s fourth-down pass to James Fox fell incomplete.

Chowan got on the board early in the fourth quarter when Ross capped a 56-yard drive with a four-yard run. The big plays on the drive were an 18-yard Ross run and a 21-yard pass completion from Helmlinger to James Fox. Alejandro’s PAT made it 28-14.

The Braves attempted to drive again in the fourth quarter, but Helmlinger’s pass was intercepted by Ricky Wilkerson on one drive an Tony Scott forced a Ross fumble on another.

&uot;The defense played pretty good,&uot; Atkinson said. &uot;Our changes on defense paid off today.

&uot;Our effort was great, but you can’t make the mistakes we did today,&uot; he added.

The coach also said he was pleased with the effort of Ross, who had 101 yards on 17 carries.

The Braves, who dropped to 1-3 on the year, will host Southern Virginia University next week for their annual Homecoming affair. Kickoff is slated for 12 noon.