Cougars crush North Pitt
By News-Argus Staff
Published in Sports on November 6, 2005 2:28 AM
By BRANDON HUGHES
Courtesy Greenville Reflector
BETHEL -- Goldsboro turned in a record-setting performance in a 59-0 win in its season finale at Class 2-A Eastern Plains Conference foe North Pitt on Friday.
The Cougars turned in their highest point total under third-year coach Maurice Jackson as quarterback Adrian Lewis passed for a career-best 286 yards and four touchdowns.
Meanwhile, defensive back Brandon Herring had a school-record five interceptions, one off of a state record, and returned two for touchdowns. On the offensive side of the ball, Herring had two touchdown receptions -- finishing the night with a career-best four scores and 101 yards.
"We wanted to go out and send a message. We are capable and should be in the playoffs after our dominating performance," Goldsboro coach Maurice Jackson said. "Our record may not indicate it, but we are a playoff-worthy team."
"The kids just came out focused and ready to play. They were just ready to go. Herring said before the game, 'I don't want it to be my last game.' He actually played that way."
The Panthers wrapped up a rocky regular season on Friday night as they fell to 2-9 overall and 0-5 in EPC play.
North Pitt may have been mentally prepared for their clash with Goldsboro, but the Panthers were overmatched from the onset, falling victim to numerous mistakes on offense. The Cougars' aggressive defense preyed on North Pitt throughout the contest, forcing eight turnovers, including seven interceptions. Goldsboro's athletic secondary and receiving corps dominated with several players going both ways and putting up big time performances.
Lewis was in sync with his wideouts all game. The signal-caller struck quickly on his team's opening possession, hooking up with Jacob Sykes on an eight-yard touchdown. Monaquavis Edwards notched the extra-point to give the Cougars a 7-0 lead and the rout was on.
Herring was the recipient of North Pitt quarterback Mark Battle's first interception, returning it 40 yards for a touchdown on the Panthers' next possession. Battle was picked off three more times in the first half and Goldsboro led 33-0 before the break. Lewis' third touchdown pass, a 30-yard strike to Edwards, came with just 11 seconds left in the second frame.
North Pitt did gain some momentum in the third quarter, intercepting Lewis twice, but couldn't hold onto the pigskin. Goldsboro scored three touchdowns in a span of three minutes, including an electrifying run by Sykes, who took the handoff on a reverse and escaped a tackler in the backfield before sprinting 65 yards to paydirt.
Herring found the end zone three times, twice as a receiver and another after returning an interception 65 yards for a touchdown, his fourth pick of the game.
Treme Boone led the Cougars' rushing attack with 120 yards on 22 carries, including a 10-yard touchdown run in the second quarter.
Battle completed 13-of-37 passing attempts for 87 yards for North Pitt, which was held to just 113 yards of offense.
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