Without a Hitch

Without a Hitch
November 14
00:00 2014

Perfect season for Tabor JV

(pictured above:  Mount Tabor’s Tyrek McNeil (1) runs to daylight.) (photos by Charles Lefwich Jr.)

The deed is done.

Mount Tabor’s junior varsity completed its mission to go undefeated with a season-ending 14-0 victory over Davie County Thursday, Nov. 6. But it was hardly a cakewalk.

“It’s always tough to come away with a win at Davie,” said Coach Tieshaun Brown of Mount Tabor. “There was a lot of adversity that we had to deal with. But our kids never got rattled. They pulled together and our defense showed up big, just like it has all season long.”

Considering how Mount Tabor (10-0) routinely won by large margins all season long, the season finale was uncharacteristically low-scoring. The weather conditions for the road game in Mocksville didn’t help matters any.

By kickoff time, the heavy rains had stopped, but the field was soggy and wind gusts created problems in the kicking and passing phases of the game for both teams. The Spartans, however, had a hand in its ineffectiveness on offense. Four touchdowns were called back because of penalties.

Mount Tabor got on the board midway through the first quarter when Matthew Powell returned a punt 49 yards for a touchdown. It was the fourth time this season that Powell scored on a kick return.

Davie County (4-6) had an opportunity to tie the game in the second quarter, but was unable to convert. The War Eagles got the ball on Mount Tabor’s 26-yard line when Spartans punter Benjamin Gardner dropped the snap and was tackled before he could kick the ball.

On third down inside Mount Tabor’s 20, Christopher Goldston and Jack U’ren sacked the Davie quarterback for a loss. On the next play, Elijah Banks broke up a fourth-down pass to squash that threat. The Spartans led 7-0 at halftime.

In the third quarter, Davie had Mount Tabor pinned deep in its own territory. If the War Eagles defense was able hold, it would give their offense excellent field position and another chance to tie the game.

Coach Tieshaun Brown

Coach Tieshaun Brown

But on third-and-15, Teddy Christakos connected with Tyrek McNeil on a fade route that covered 30 yards. The Spartans didn’t score on that series, but moved the ball enough so that when they punted, Davie wouldn’t get the ball near midfield. “That was a key sequence,” said Brown. “At the time, we were protecting a 7-point lead and didn’t want to give them any extra help by giving them good field position.”

For the remainder of the contest, Mount Tabor turned to its ground game to keep the chains moving and take time off the clock. With just under three minutes left to play, Davie came with an all-out blitz on third down. McNeil took the hand off and spotted a slight opening, which he turned into a 60-yard touchdown run.

“I was never able to feel at ease until that last score,” said Brown. “Tyrek found the seam and took off. This was a great season. It turned out so much different from last year when we struggled a lot and ended up winning only four games.”

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Craig Greenlee

Craig Greenlee

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