Rockets pound Loretto on senior night
The Forrest Rockets (2-6, 2-3) broke a three-game losing streak and remained in the Region 6/2A playoff race via a big 56-26 win over Loretto (2-5, 0-3) on Senior Night Friday at Murrey E. Holton Field in Chapel Hill.
“That was a great, great, great way to send these seniors out,” Forrest coach Brent Johns said. “They are a good senior class and they needed that tonight.”
The Rockets can clinch a berth in the postseason with a win at Community on October 27.
Forrest rushed the ball 45 times for 499 yards versus Loretto with Nick McClendon (15-195-TD) and Troy Turner (7-147-3TD) leading way.
“We got physical with them and got our run game going early,” Johns said. “I’m kicking myself now for not having that same game plan last week, but that’s on me.”
And most of all, Forrest played a near flawless game with no turnovers and just one penalty for five yards after several games of shooting themselves in the foot.
The Rockets received the opening kickoff and scored on the drive via a Turner 25-yard TD run and after the defense held to force a punt, Forrest crossed the goal line once again on a Parker Stuard 4-yard scamper to make it 13-0 with 3:07 remaining in the first quarter.
The Mustangs stayed in the game as they went on a 67-yard scoring drive that was capped off by quarterback Christian Austill’s 9-yard TD run on the first play of the second quarter.
On the ensuing kickoff, Turner caught the ball at the Forrest 4-yard line and took the rock to the house before Layton Bennett passed to Wes McCoy for the 2-point conversion, making 20-7.
Loretto gutted out another long drive and scored an Austill 19-yard run with 8:32 remaining in the first half.
The contest continued to go back-and-forth, up and down the field as the Rockets went 40 yards in a hurry, scoring on a Drew Carlisle 1-yard punch in.
The Mustangs went back on offense and made it a 28-20 contest on a Preston Berryhill 1-yard run that capped off a 68-yard drive.
McCoy answered with a 52-yard kickoff return to the Loretto 34-yard line and five plays later, McCoy bashed in from two yards out with 15 seconds left in the first half.
Loretto scored on its first drive of the second half, but so did the Rockets on a Turner 20-yard touchdown run.
The Forrest defense finally got a stop, taking the ball away on downs before putting the icing on the Senior Night festivities on a McClendon 27-yard touchdown run, followed by a Turner 72-yard burst to the end zone with 9:03 left in the contest.
“We just kept going and kept working on defense and trying different things on defense and different people on defense and finally got a couple stops when we needed it,” Johns said.
Johns sent in the reserves from there and they played out the rest of the game.
The Rockets have a bye this week and return to the gridiron next week when they travel to archrival Cascade (0-7, 0-3).
“We are going to get real basic in practice and get ready for this next game,” Johns. “We all know when these two teams meet, you can throw the records out.”
Loretto 7 13 6 0-26
Forrest 13 22 14 7-56
Forrest-Troy Turner 20-yard run, Dalton Colvin PAT, 9:53
Forrest- Parker Stuard 4-yard run, PAT NG, 3:07
Loretto-Christian Austill 9-yard run, Lane Beckman PAT good, 1:07
Forrest-Turner 96-yard kickoff return, Colvin PAT, 11:39
Lorreto-Austill 19-yard run PAT NG, 8:32
Forrest-Drew Carlisle 1-yard run, PAT pass Layton Bennett to Wes McCoy, 6:49
Loretto-Preston Berryhill 1-yard run, PAT NG, 1:56
Forrest-McCoy 2-yard run, Carson Baker PAT, 0:15
Loretto-Jimmy Gordon 35-yard pass from Austill, PAT NG, 10:21
Forrest-Turner 20-yard run, Colvin PAT, 6:57
Forrest-Nick McClendon 27-yard run, Baker PAT, 0:40
Forrest-Turner 72-yard run, Colvin PAT, 9:02
Total Yards-Loretto 374, Forrest 516
Rushing-Loretto 225, Forrest 499
Passing-Loretto 149, Forrest 17
Turnovers-Loretto 0, Forrest 0
Penalties-Loretto 7-45, Forrest 1-5
Rushing-Nick McClendon 15-195-TD, Troy Turner 7-147-3TD, Drew Carlisle 3-41-TD, Joseph Whitaker 6-38, Wes McCoy 5-26-TD, Jacob Wright 2-18, Jeff Gross 1-12, Hunter Pendley 3-10, Parker Stuard 2-10, Layton Bennett 1-2
Passing-Layton Bennett 1-1, Josh Meglis 2-2-17
Receiving-Nick McClendon 1-14, Wes McCoy 1-3
Tackles-Drew Carlisle 5, Alex Patmore 4, Josh Hill 4, Wes McCoy 3, Spencer McCown 3, Colby Bluthardt 2, Bryton Spitzley 2, Jeff Gross 2, Pryor Haines 2, Dowlen Hosford 2, Josh Meglis 1, Ryan Dyer 1, Tate Garvin 1, Austin Geeting 1, Nick McClendon 1 (SACK)
Kickoffs-Troy Turner 2-107-TD, Wes McCoy 1-52, Drew Carlisle 1-10
PAT-Dalton Colvin 4-4, Carson Baker 2-3