09/19/04 — North Johnson stays unbeaten

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North Johnson stays unbeaten

Published in Sports on September 19, 2004 8:13 AM

DIXON -- North Johnston's remarkable start to the season is quickly becoming the Cin-derella story of the year.

The Panthers had a handful of big plays in the opening half Friday night as North Johnston ran over Dixon 49-14. The win brought The Panthers to 5-0, their best start in nearly two decades as North Johnston finished non-conference play undefeated.

The Panther offense has now scored at least 40 points in four of its five games.

Early evening thunderstorms delayed the game until an 8:30 p.m. start, but there was no lag in the Panther running game as Adrian Briscoe broke through for the first of his three touchdowns on just the second play of the game, going 60 yards for 7-0 North lead.

Briscoe's run was the first of several home-run plays for his team. Three minutes later Brandon Sanders took a Dixon punt 71 yards into the end zone for a 14-0 lead.

A ray of hope appeared for Dixon when the Bulldogs recovered a J.P. Wise fumble. Dixon capitalized when quarterback David Owens threw a 40-yard touchdown pass to an open Devon Rhodes to shave the lead to 14-6.

After another Briscoe score, the senior tailback showed what he could do on the defensive side of the ball by intercepting a pass from Owens giving North Johnston a short field and a chance to take a decisive lead. One play later, the Panthers capitalized as Brad Holloman tossed a 31-yard touchdown pass to Damien Allen for a 28-6 score.

The key was good offensive line play and strength of the Panthers up front.

"Both sides of the ball tonight played very well despite the circumstances," said North Johnston coach Ken Avent.

Briscoe's final touchdown of the night was a 40-yard run just before the half.

Up comfortably for most of the game, the Panthers got a glimpse of their future in the second half when backup quarterback Josh Wentz faked a handoff, freezing the Bulldog defense. Wentz kept the ball for a 60-yard scamper into the end zone.

"It's good for the kids," said Avent of his team's 5-0 campaign. "They've worked hard all year, but we're not going to stop here."

North starts conference play against Farmville Central next week.

North Johnston 21 14 7 7 -- 49

Dixon 6 0 8 0 -- 14

First Quarter

NJ -- Briscoe 60 run (Stancil kick) 11:00

NJ -- Sanders 71 run (Stancil kick) 8:44

Dix -- Rhodes 40 pass from Owens (run fail) 4:07

NJ -- Briscoe 6 run (Stancil kick)

Second Quarter

NJ -- Allen 31 pass from Holloman (Stancil kick)

NJ -- Briscoe 40 run (Stancil kick)

Third Quarter

NJ -- Holloman 8 run (Stancil kick)

Dix -- Miller 2 run (Miller run)

Fourth quarter

NJ -- Wentz 60 run (Stancil kick)

NJ Dix

First downs 13 5

Rushes-yds 36-311 26-96

Passing yds 31 68

Total yds 342 164

Comp-att-int 1-1-0 3-13-0

Fumbles-lost 4-2 2-0

Penalties-yds 4-30 6-55


RUSHING -- North Johnston -- Adrian Briscoe 7-139, 2 TD; J.P.Wise 11-71; Matthew Holloman 4-26; TD; Jonathan Britt 9-47; Tony Cooper 5-28. Dixon -- Holman 9-62; Devon Rhodes 3-5; Carter 9-8; David Owens 1- (-4); Miller 4-33.

PASSING -- North Johnston -- Brad Holloman 1-1-31-1. Dixon -- Holman-0-5-0-0; David Owens 3-8-68-0, TD.

RECEIVING -- North Johnston -- Damien Allen 1-31, TD. Dixon -- Earp 2-28; Devon Rhodes 1-40, TD.