James Kenan handles Hobbton
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on October 30, 2010 11:09 PM
NEWTON GROVE -- James Kenan linebacker Donald Johnson exploded by his defender, racked Hobbton fullback Ira Moore with a bone-jarring tackle and the ball popped free onto the turf.
Johnson quickly recovered the fumble, crawled out from underneath the pile of players and flipped the football to the referee.
Five plays later, quarterback Parker Jones supplied a 3-yard touchdown run and the Tigers were off and running in their Tri-County 1-A Conference contest Friday evening. Jones compiled 172 yards of total offense in a 48-20 romp over the Wildcats, who had their modest, two-game win streak snapped.
"The games we have lost this year have been because we've turned the ball over just like that," said Kenan head coach Ken Avent Jr. "We're finally getting some turnovers and we're able to capitalize on mistakes other people are making, so that was huge."
Johnson's fumble hit and recovery occurred after Kenan's third possession stalled on a third-down pass inside Hobbton territory. The Wildcats fumbled the kickoff after Jones' touchdown, and the Tigers answered with a nine-play scoring drive.
Kenan led 27-7.
"Being able to get a turnover in a situation (kickoff) like that, got the comfortable lead for us," said Avent Jr. "The last couple of weeks, it's been like that for us compared to when we lost four weeks in a row and other teams were capitalizing on our mistakes.
"It's a good feeling to get back on that side a little bit."
Curtis Williams' 66-yard fumble return for a touchdown halted a Hobbton drive in Kenan territory early in the third quarter. Senior defensive back Jonathan Webster picked off a Wildcat pass, but the Tigers' coughed it up a few plays later.
Charles Chestnutt scooped up the loose ball and rambled 56 yards to the end zone. Hobbton trailed 34-14 after three quarters and eventually endured its 17th defeat against James Kenan in 23 meetings.
"We have been playing pretty good the last couple of weeks and any time you win one in our conference, that's big," said Avent Jr. "Our confidence is up and that's an important thing for us right now."
Dontrill Hyman's 59-yard touchdown gallop on a fourth-down fake punt and Devon Best's 5-yard run capped the Tigers' scoring in the fourth quarter. Kenan extended its win streak to four games and became playoff eligible in just its second road victory of the year.
Jones accounted for three touchdowns, including a 28-yard scoring strike to Webster after the Wildcats' second turnover before halftime. The Tigers owned a 399-169 edge in total offense.
Kenan concludes regular-season play Friday at archrival Wallace-Rose Hill, which has clinched its second consecutive TCC championship.
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