APA's nightmare second half dooms team in loss to RMA
Arendell Parrott had its shot at revenge Friday to open the season — and lost it in the second half.
The Patriots had a huge advantage early, but turnovers and a resurgent Rocky Mount Academy team was too much in a 58-48 loss to open the 2018 campaign. Arendell Parrott (0-1) went up by 26 points in the waning moments of the second quarter, but a nightmare of a third quarter was the downfall in a NCISAA 2A 2017 state title game rematch.
The Eagles (1-0) have now beaten the Patriots in the past four meetings, including the 66-60 overtime thriller last year to pick up the state title. The teams have shared the last five championships with Rocky Mount Academy winning in 2013 and 2014 as well with Arendell Parrott picking up 2015 and 2016 titles.
“We beat ourselves (in this one),” Beaman said. “We turned the ball over six times, and just weren’t conditioned, which I’ll take full blame for. We did what we wanted to on offense — we just ran out of gas.”
Arendell Parrott’s turnover problem started early with lost fumbles on the team’s first three drives, the final one coming deep in its own territory. Rocky Mount took advantage of the final one when Isaiah Thomas found Peyton David on a fade route for a 16-yard touchdown late in the first for the 8-0 lead.
On the ensuing kickoff, the Patriots found life when Matthew Huntley scored on a 75-yard touchdown return and continued momentum with Huntley’s interception on Rocky Mount’s next offensive play. Five plays later, Shy Thompson’s 34-yard score to open the second gave Arendell Parrott its first lead at 12-8. Thompson wasn’t finished in the quarter, scoring two more touchdowns on the ground and sandwiched between a 33-yard touchdown pass from Reynolds Barringer to Matthew Huntley, the Patriots led 34-8 late in the second.
From there, Rocky Mount Academy exploded, first taking advantage of a roughing the kicker penalty on its next drive, which finished with a pass from Thomas to David, who threw it behind his head on a lateral to Jacob Braddy on a 30-yard hook-and-ladder play to end the half. Arendell Parrott would increase its lead to 40-16 after Trey McLawhorn’s 1-yard touchdown run to open the third quarter, but the Eagles responded with 28 unanswered points, all on Braddy rushing touchdowns, to end the quarter. Rocky Mount Academy benefitted greatly from three straight Patriots turnovers — a lost fumble on an offensive drive before losing the ball twice on subsequent kickoffs — to go ahead 44-40 with 3:34 to play in the third. After the teams traded possessions in the fourth, Braddy would score on a 17-yard touchdown with 8:17 to go to push the lead to 11.
“I told them to take it one play at a time,” Rocky Mount coach Terrell Hudgins said. “We were just turning the ball over too much and then after that touchdown (to end the first half) it gave the team a chance to breathe. Special teams was huge for us — we didn’t miss an extra point, caused two fumbles on kickoffs and guys stepped up. Then you had Peyton David who came in after we lost our quarterback and played his butt off, and the offensive line played great in the second half.”
Thompson’s big kickoff return brought the ball to the Eagles 37 and three plays later, Zach Vendemia found William Hill on a 12-yard score to cut the deficit to three with 7:08 left, but Rocky Mount Academy put the game away on the next drive, converting on a fourth-and-6 at the Arendell Parrott 35 with a 9-yard Braddy run, followed by David’s 5-yard quarterback keeper three plays later.
David said the win was for Thomas, who didn’t play in the second half.
“I stayed with these boys,” David said. “I played quarterback my entire JV career and last year I came in the semifinal game when Isaiah got hurt, fumbling three times in a row before getting to it. Isaiah is my brother and after every touchdown I ran to the sideline to tell him ‘I’ve got you.’”
Arendell Parrott will now focus its attention on Bear Grass Charter School on Aug. 31 in the Patriots’ first 11-man football game since 1989. The Patriots will get back to 8-man action against Cary Christian Sept. 7 and have a second chance at Rocky Mount Academy in the regular season — this one at home — on Oct. 5.
Braddy recorded 145 yards rushing and six touchdowns for the Eagles while Thompson had a game-high 158 yards on the ground and three touchdowns for the Patriots. Defensively, Huntley registered two interceptions.
ROCKY MOUNT ACADEMY 58, ARENDELL PARROTT 48
APA 6 28 6 8 — 48
RMA 8 8 28 14 — 58
RMA — Peyton David 16 pass from Isaiah Thomas (Jacob Braddy run), 2:19
APA — Matthew Huntley 75 kickoff return (run failed), 2:01
APA — Shy Thompson 34 run (run failed), 11:50
APA — Thompson 2 run (pass failed), 8:47
APA — Huntley 33 pass from Reynolds Barringer (Trey McLawhorn run), 6:24
APA — Thompson 33 run (Blake Smith run), 2:03
RMA — Braddy 20 run (Thomas run), :00
APA — McLawhorn 1 run (run failed), 8:57
RMA — Braddy 12 run (Mercer Boyette kick), 8:19
RMA — Braddy 3 run (Boyette kick), 4:10
RMA — Braddy 24 run (Boyette kick), 3:46
RMA — Braddy 2 run (Boyette kick), 3:34
RMA — Braddy 17 run (Boyette kick), 8:17
APA — William Hill 12 pass from Zach Vendemia (Smith run), 7:08
RMA — David 5 run (Boyette kick), 3:03
First Downs 15 17
Rushes 36-258 45-178
Passing 7-10-0 10-14-2
Passing Yards 98 125
Total yards 356 303
Punts 2-23.5 2-26.0
Fumbles 6-6 0-0
Penalties 9-93 5-22
RUSHING—Arendell Parrott: Thompson 20-158, Reynolds Barringer 2-63, Trey McLawhorn 6-41, Matthew Huntley 2-14, Weaver Sumrell 1-2, Zach Vendemia 5-minus 20. Rocky Mount Academy: Jacob Braddy 16-145, Isaiah Thomas 13-16, Tanner Jernigan 4-14, Zach Perry 3-11, Oliver Bissett 6-minus 4, Peyton David 3-minus 4.
PASSING—Arendell Parrott: Barringer 2-3-0, 54; Vendemia 4-6-0, 32; Huntley 1-1-0, 12. Rocky Mount Academy: David 3-3-0, 71; Thomas 7-11-2, 54.
RECEIVING—Arendell Parrott: Huntley 2-54, Thompson 3-26, William Hill 1-12, McLawhorn 1-6. Rocky Mount Academy: David 6-51, Braddy 2-40, Jackson Bryant 1-31, Thomas Boyette 1-3.