Plymouth spoils home opener for Jags

Published 11:47 pm Friday, August 24, 2012

CREEKSVILLE – On paper there wasn’t much to be happy about when the Northampton County Jaguars made their home opener at Roy F. Lowry Stadium here last night.

The home team lost 32-2 to visiting Plymouth High School and never found their way into the endzone, just a week after scoring 58 in a rout of Kestrel Heights.

But it wasn’t so much the Plymouth offense that defeated the Jaguars as the home team’s inability to capitalize on opportunities. Northampton saw several evaporate due to miscues or failure to convert.

Plymouth came in fresh off a 52-20 throttling of Farmville Central and appeared ready to put Northampton away early.

After forcing the Jags to go three-and-out, Plymouth put together a drive that moved the ball from their own 32-yardline to the Northampton 22, but the home team defense stiffened and forced a punt.

The Jaguars punted on their next possession and Plymouth took over on their own 39-yardline. On the first play from scrimmage, Quadree Pettiford broke off a 14-yard gain and set the tone for the drive.

Seven plays later, Demarkius Price found paydirt on one-yard plunge. Lazarus Barrow added the two-point conversion and the Vikings led 8-0.

Northampton had no intention of going quietly, however, and responded with a 10-play drive that moved the ball from their own 33-yardline to the Plymouth three.

Settled into their wishbone set, the Jaguars ran through Plymouth all the way to the three then a fumble just before the endzone marker set the tone for the night.

Plymouth took over and scored on a 75-yard bomb from Shamonte Ferebee to DeAndre Phelps. The conversion failed, but the Vikings had a 14-0 lead.

Northampton punted again and Plymouth seemed ready to put the game away early as they drove to the one-yardline before the Jaguar defense held and gave the ball back to its offense.

Despite driving to the 33-yardline of the Vikings, Northampton couldn’t score because the first half clock expired.

On their first drive of the second half, the Jaguars again had the opportunity to get into the endzone, driving 46 yards down to the one-yardline. Tyrell Powell and Christian Boone had the big plays on the drive.

Still, the home team couldn’t find the endzone and turned the ball over on downs.

This time something good came of the miscue though. On the second play of the ensuing drive, a pair of Northampton defenders sacked Ferebee in the endzone for a safety making it 14-2 with 7:33 to go in the third quarter.

The Jaguars appeared ready to make short work of the field after the free kick, driving to the 13-yardline on just three plays including runs of nine and seven yards by Cedric Rice. On the next play, the runner appeared headed for the endzone when a fumble occurred and Plymouth recovered, killing the drive.

The wheels began to fall off as the fourth quarter started, however.

Plymouth scored just over a minute into the period when Demarkus Price went in from 10 yards out. The conversion failed, but Plymouth led 20-2.

The visiting team blocked a punt on Northampton’s next possession and scored again when Kendrick Pitt hit paydirt from two yards out. The conversion again failed, but the Vikings led 26-2 with 6:35 to play.

Northampton’s last-ditch effort came up short when Khalil Sheppard picked off a pass for Plymouth.

Despite having the game well in hand and less than six minutes to play, the Vikings took to the air, getting a 22-yard pass completion from Ferebee to Pitt which helped set up a Price one-yard plunge. The conversion failed again, but the 32-2 final was established.

Northampton (1-1) will look to bounce back into the win column next week when they travel to Rocky Mount Prep.