North Lenoir affected by West Craven's aerial attack
North Lenoir’s Ny’Jai Koonce tries to shake off West Craven’s Latrell Campbell during Wednesday’s contest. Photo by Jimmy Kilpatrick / Special to Neuse News
VANCEBORO | If recent trends continue, Friday’s contest with Washington should be a great one for North Lenoir.
The Hawks are still looking for their first win on the season after falling 54-14 to West Craven Wednesday in Vanceboro. North Lenoir (0-9, 0-5 Eastern Carolina Conference) will have a final chance this season Friday against the Pam Pack on Senior Night.
North Lenoir is in the third game of a rough stretch — playing four contests in 11 days to close the season. After falling to South Lenoir 46-14 Oct. 29, North Lenoir had undefeated Kinston on the ropes three days later before losing a 20-19 heartbreaker.
Hawks coach Jim Collins said despite the brutal stretch, the team didn’t play to its potential against the Eagles (6-4, 5-1).
“I didn’t want them to use the fact we’ve got four games in 11 days as an excuse as to why we played so poorly (Wednesday night),” Collins said. “West Craven is a very physical team…and we’ve got to be tougher. We’re not going to use injuries as an excuse, and obviously this wasn’t the same team we saw Friday night (against Kinston).
“If our team’s M.O. is correct, we’ll put in a good effort on Friday. We played very poorly against South Lenoir, played great against Kinston, played poorly (versus West Craven) so I’m hoping we put our best foot forward against Washington.”
Washington came out firing through the air as a North Lenoir three-and-out were sandwiched between two long passing touchdowns from Trent Casey to Latrell Campbell. The Hawks cut into the lead on a short drive, aided by a pair of Eagles turnovers and ending with a Terrance Copper touchdown run, but Silas Wallace answered on the ensuing drive. Still, Casey was the catalyst in the first half, throwing for 224 yards on 9 of 10 passing and three touchdowns, including a 26-yard connection with Jonathan Ward to give West Craven a 28-7 halftime advantage.
“We saw some mismatches out there and I knew our guys could get outside and make plays,” Casey said. “There were some good 1-on-1 matchups and I knew we were more physical.”
North Lenoir had a nightmare third quarter, as two lost fumbles and a turnover on downs lead to quick West Craven touchdowns. The Eagles had a trio of scoring drives of three plays or less on the way to a 48-7 lead heading into the fourth, and Carice Raynor forced the running clock on the first play of the final frame with a 45-yard touchdown.
The Hawks closed out the scoring on a Ny’Jain Koonce touchdown.
West Craven coach Mike Twichell said the Eagles made adjustments based off what the defense gave them.
“We saw a lot of perimeter stuff tonight and thought we had a speed advantage,” Twitchell said. “I thought North Lenoir was really good inside the box and they got us into some throwing downs, which we happened to convert well in the first half.”
WEST CRAVEN 54, NORTH LENOIR 14
NL 0 7 0 7 — 14
WC 14 14 20 6 — 54
WC — Latrell Campbell 46 pass from Trent Casey (Dontrayal Hill run), 8:23
WC — Campbell 75 pass from Casey (run failed), 5:39
NL — Terrance Copper 6 run (Damon Hewitt kick), 9:35
WC — Silas Wallace 29 run (run failed), 6:53
WC — Jonathan Ward 26 pass from Casey (Charles Collins from Casey), 2:14
WC — Raquandre Johnson 17 run (Emery Boomer run), 7:50
WC — DayAmonte Campbell 9 run (run failed), 5:15
WC — Carice Raynor 19 run (run failed), 2:51
WC — Raynor 45 run (kneeldown), 11:50
NL — Ny’Jai Koonce 24 run (Hewitt kick), 8:50
First Downs 9 16
Rushes 32-56 28-256
Passing 4-7-0 9-10-0
Passing Yards 59 224
Total yards 115 480
Punts 4-37.5 3-38.7
Fumbles 5-2 0-0
Penalties 5-49 11-129
RUSHING— North Lenoir: Terrance Copper 6-49, Trey Barnes 15-36, Ny’Jai Koonce 3-29, Ja’lyn McNeil 2-11, Blake Davis 2-4, Christian Young 2-minus 36, Jason Gagnon 2-minus 37. West Craven: Carice Raynor 4-67, Silas Wallace 8-62, Emery Boomer 2-44, Raquandre Johnson 2-38, Dontrayal Hill 6-25, DayAmonte Campbell 1-22, Kedrick Tyre 2-4, Jonathan Ward 3-minus 6.
PASSING— North Lenoir: Gagnon 3-5-0, 47; Young 1-2-0, 12. West Craven: Trent Casey 9-10-0, 224
RECEIVING— North Lenoir: Koonce 2-49, Copper 2-10. West Craven: Latrell Campbell 4-156, Johnson 3-41, Ward 1-26, Arthur Abrams 1-1.