1-AA East semifinals: James Kenan whips East Bladen
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on November 25, 2007 2:02 AM
WARSAW -- Concerned with East Bladen's speed and athleticism, James Kenan's defense did its job Friday evening.
The unbeaten and No. 2-ranked Tigers forced five turnovers in a 27-7 rout at Bill Taylor Field. James Kenan (14-0 overall) entertains Pender County in the N.C. High School Athletic Association Class 1-AA (large school) eastern championship next Friday.
East Bladen concluded the year 10-3.
Linebacker Josh Hicks, a preseason all-state selection by N.C. Prep Football News, jump-started the defense in the opening quarter. His 87-yard fumble return, the longest by any area player this season, put the Tigers ahead to stay.
Hicks collected eight tackles, six assists and recovered another fumble later in the game. Derrick Barden paced the Tigers' defense with a game-high 12 tackles, seven assists, one sack and a fumble hit.
Jamar Rogers and Alex Monk provided six tackles and 10 assists apiece. Monk also recovered a fumble and hauled in a 29-yard, second-quarter touchdown pass from Shawn Jones.
The third-seeded Eagles, the Southeastern Conference champions, couldn't overcome five turnovers. The Tigers yielded just 153 yards of total offense and lost their shutout bid in the third quarter.
James Kenan manufactured a balanced offensive game -- 165 yards on the ground and 134 yards passing. Stedman Mathis supplied 65 yards and touchdown runs of 21 and 16 yards on 10 totes. Brandon Satchell contributed 81 yards on 22 carries.
Jones completed 5 of 12 passes to five different receivers -- Monk, Chris Marable, Jamar Rogers, Kendal Jones and Tony Jones.
East Bladen 0 0 7 0 -- 7
James Kenan 14 7 0 6 -- 27
JK -- Hicks 87 fumble return (Vasquez kick), 4:49
JK -- Mathis 21 run (Vasquez kick), 0:30
JK -- Monk 29 pass from S. Jones (Vasquez kick), 3:19
JK -- Mathis 16 run (kick failed), 8:51
E. Bladen J. Kenan
First downs 8 14
Rushes-yds 31-145 38-165
Passing yds 8 134
Total yards 153 299
C-A-I 3-12-1 5-12-1
Fumbles-lost 4-4 1-0
Penalties 9-90 12-105
RUSHING -- James Kenan -- Brandon Satchell 22-81; Stedman Mathis 10-65, 2 TDs; Darius Heslip 5-15; Shawn Jones 1-4.
PASSING -- James Kenan -- Shawn Jones 5-12-1 134, TD.
RECEIVING -- James Kenan -- Chris Marable 1-46; Jamar Rogers 1-9; Kendal Jones 1-39; Tony Jones 1-11; Alex Monk 1-29, TD.
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