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Red Raiders Hold Off Falcons

South Point staves off rally, two-point conversion for hard-fought victory


                The South Point Red Raiders advance again. But it sure was not an easy task as they watched a 28-14 lead wither away down the stretch. But were able to hold on for a 28-27 lead after stopping West Rowan on a two-point conversion try. The Red Raiders were also down 14-7 at half-time.

                “I thought our character was tested tonight. Our kids showed their character” said South Point head coach Mickey Lineberger “They have a great football and they are very physical. We are blessed to play four more quarters. It was up to our kids to cover each other’s backs. At times our offense played great. At times our defense played great.”

                Falcons quarterback Casey Otto got things going for the Falcons early. After a kickoff return all the way to the South Point 20-yard line, Otto capped off the drive with a seven-yard touchdown pass to Kortez Weeks. Austin Morrison’s extra point made it 7-0.

                But you knew it would not take South Point long to respond. The Red Raiders capped off a drive of their own with a three-yard run by Nolan Wilson. Thomas Lempereur tied the game with the extra point kick. But before the half expired, the Falcons put another score on the board. This time, it was on a two-yard run by Casey Otto. Morrison nailed the extra point for the 14-7 half-time lead.

                The Red Raiders received the ball in the second half and did not waste an opportunity. Ryland Etherton’s one-yard touchdown run and Lempereur’s extra point tied the game at 14-14. Things got worse before they got better for the Falcons. Diontre Kings 19-yard touchdown run and Nolan Wilson’s 12-yard touchdown run put the Red Raiders up 28-14.

                Then it was the Falcons’ turn to respond. West Rowan cut South Point’s lead with an Otto 29-yard touchdown pass to Juwan Houston. After stopping South Point on the ensuing drive, the Falcons struck again with just second remaining. Otto hit Kreshon Alexander for a three-yard touchdown strike.

                The Falcons opted to go for the win on a two-point conversion try but were unsuccessful.

                “Our kids fought like crazy and gave us a chance to win.” said West Rowan head coach Joe Nixon. Nixon said this about the failed two-point try “We game planned all week that if we were in this situation, we would go for the win. It’s easy to second guess it when it doesn’t work. Each time you play after Thanksgiving you had a great season. I’m proud of our kids.”

                South Point will advance to play Kings Mountain, a 28-13 winner over Hibriten.

                “Kings Mountain has a great football team.” Lineberger said “At this stage of the game, they’re all going to be tough. You have to win tough games to be a state champion.”

                “Our coaches do such a great job in preparing these kids. We have 350 years coaching experience and three former head coaches on staff.”

                                Rylan Etherton led South Point with 150 yards and a touchdown. JT Starr recorded two interceptions for the Red Raider defense.


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