11/23/08 — GHS shocks Bunn

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GHS shocks Bunn

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on November 23, 2008 12:38 AM

BUNN -- Every time Bunn tailback Scottie Harrison touched the ball Friday evening, Goldsboro head football coach Eric Reid held his breath.

Harrison accounted for three touchdowns, including a pick six in the second quarter. But Harrison fumbled away his final tote and Freddie Jones returned it 71 yards for a touchdown.

"Thank you, Lord," said Reid as he pointed toward the sky.

Thanks, indeed.

Jones' return sealed the Cougars' 42-26 victory over the fourth-seeded Wildcats and ended the coaching career of Bunn's David Howle. After leading his team to 10 wins this season, Howle is retiring to follow his son -- David -- to Penn State next fall.

Goldsboro (10-2-1 overall) set up a rematch against top-seeded Tarboro High in the N.C. High School Athletic Association Class 2-A (small-school) playoffs. Kickoff is Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Viking Stadium.

Harrison led all rushers with 185 yards, including a 62-yard touchdown run on the first play from scrimmage. He added a 41-yard scoring gallop and picked off Tyrelle Jackson for a 28-yard score.

"That kid was something," said Reid of Harrison. "We had to do something to keep that young man contained a little bit because we knew we couldn't stop him. We stopped him a couple of key moments that became big for us."

The Cougars' first stop occurred late in the second quarter.

Harrison took the handoff, bullied his way into the line and lost possession. One play later, Jackson threw a 32-yard scoring strike -- into a gusty wind -- to Josh McCoy. A.J. Parker added the two-point conversion and Goldsboro led 26-20 at halftime.

"We're both run-oriented teams, but throwing that play-action pass in there and slipping the receiver (McCoy) out was big for us," said Reid. "You know, I pick on Tyrelle a lot because he doesn't have the strongest arm, but he hung in there. He throws a great intermediate ball and that (Harrison's fumble) was a key time for us to capitalize on it."

Bunn backed up the Cougars to start the third quarter. Two tackles for a loss and a false start penalty forced Goldsboro to punt into the wind from its 19-yard line.

The Wildcats took over in Cougar territory and capped a six-play drive on Justin Rodgers' 8-yard touchdown run. The two-point conversion failed, leaving the game deadlocked at 26-26 with 7:15 to go.

Goldsboro tried to answer with a 16-play drive that consumed nearly seven minutes. But Jackson's fourth-down pass left a divot in the brown grass inside the Wildcats' 10-yard line.

Bunn punted and the Cougars responded with a quick, four-play scoring possession. Parker, a fullback, exploded through the middle for a 23-yard touchdown run. Jackson's PAT pushed Goldsboro's advantage to 34-26.

The Wildcats had two more chances, but came up empty each time.

"I have to compliment my boys," said Reid. "We could have easily bowed down to them, but we kept answering everything they did. I really thought it was going to come down to who had the ball last and that we would need to stop a two-point conversion.

"Tyrelle, Enrique, A.J. ... all the boys did a wonderful job. They really wanted this game ... took it seriously."