Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Take a charter bus to Western Alamance Friday!

Arrangements have been made for a charter bus to go to the Rocky Mount-Western Alamance NCHSAA 3-A East final playoff football game in Elon.

A bus will leave at 4:30 p.m. from the Nash St. side of Rocky Mount High on Friday. The cost is $35, which includes the bus ride and a ticket to the game. Game time is at 7:30.

If you're interested in taking a more restful trip to the game, contact Rossie Tyler at 977-3085 or at 903-9565.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Gryphons get rushing record in playoff win

Rocky Mount just continues to set team records in the B.W. Holt era.

The 2007 Gryphon football team became the top rushing squad in school history during its 35-8 NCHSAA 3-A East semifinal playoff win over Southern Wayne Friday night.

The Gryphons rushed for 357 yards to push their season total to 4,209 yards - topping the previous record of 3,998 yards set in 2006. The amazing thing is that RMHS really doesn't possess a superstar rusher like fullback Demetric Marshall, who set the school's season and career records last season.

It's been a total team effort this year. Every back that has been given the ball this season seems to be running for his very life once he touches the ball. That type all-out effort, plus the blocking of a very solid offensive line, has made the difference.

Another record - 14 victories! No Rocky Mount team has ever won that many, let alone go 14-0.

RMHS also allowed no passing yards for the second time this season. Fike had no passing yardage in their NEW 6 meeting with Gryphons. It's the 11th time Rocky Mount has held a team zero passing yards, but that's not the school record.

Wilson Hunt had -4 yards passing in their meeting in 1990. The Warriors were 1-for-10 through the air in the game as the Gryphons prevailed 24-10.

The next team record on the line for RMHS is for total yards in a season - also set by the 2006 squad at 5,509. The 2007 gang has 5,038 yards so far, so that record is also in sight!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Rocky Mount Football 'Stat Watch'

  • 1. Rocky Mount needs 147 yards rushing to set a new school record for team rushing in a season. The current record is 3,998 yards set last season. The 4,600 total yards tallied by RMHS is the fifth most in school history. The record is 5,509 set also in 2006
  • 2. Junior kicker Nick Hahula set a RMHS record in its game vs. South Granville. His 10 kicking points (7 PATs, FG) was the most ever by a RMHS player. He topped the previous mark of 9 set three times by Hahula (all in 2006), once by Scott Peacock (2005) and once by Barrett Bodiford (1998).
  • Hahula's 44-yard field goal vs. South Granville was the longest recorded FG in school history - but that is still under research.
  • Hahula is also the No. 2 scorer in school history. His 207 points trails only the 228 scored by Demetric Marshall. Hahula has 126 PATs, 15 field goals and six touchdowns.
  • Hahula has almost every kicking record in the book. But a few have eluded him - like the most field goals in a season. One more this season will tie him for that record (7). He needs also needs eight more PATs for the single season record in that category.
  • 3. The 121 points Rocky Mount's opponents have scored is the lowest a RMHS team has allowed since 1985 when it gave up 93 points. The fewest ever - 1963 - 51 points, and that team won the state 4-A title.
  • 4. Rocky Mount is currently riding a 14-game home winning streak. Its last loss at home was a 30-10 win by Western Alamance in the 3-A East finals - the final game of the 2005 season.
  • 5. Rocky Mount is currently tied for its longest winning streak ever - 13 games. It also won 13 straight games from game #10 in 1963 to game #11 in 1964 without a loss. But RMHS also didn't lose a game over another 13-game period from game 1 in 1962 to game 2 in 1963, but it was tied 6-6 in game #5 1962 by Fayetteville High (now called Terry Sanford).
  • 6. Rocky Mount has never won 14 games in a season. A win Friday would give it 14 victories.
  • 7. RM vs. Wayne County Series: Rocky Mount vs. Goldsboro: RM leads 19-17-1; Rocky Mount vs. Eastern Wayne: RM leads 14-3; Rocky Mount vs. Southern Wayne: RM leads 1-0

Sunday, November 18, 2007

NCWC football stuns top-seeded Presidents in OT, 35-34

NCWC Sports Information

WASHINGTON, Pa. - The North Carolina Wesleyan football team continued its impressive 2007 season on Saturday afternoon, knocking off top-seeded Washington & Jefferson by a 35-34 score in overtime in the first round of the NCAA Division III football playoffs at Cameron Stadium.

Senior kicker Brian Vaughn's point-after in the first overtime proved the be gamewinner. The Blue & Gold have now won nine straight games to move to 9-2 on the season.

The Presidents (10-1) had a chance to win the game in the extra session, but a fake extra-point attempt rush by sophomore kicker Chuck Grabner was stopped by NCWC senior Jezreel Davis.

Washington & Jefferson, which was making its eighth NCAA playoff appearance in the past nine years, grabbed a 7-0 lead at the 5:14 mark of the first quarter after junior quarterback Bobby Swallow drilled a 24-yard touchdown pass to senior wide receiver Tom McCafferty.

NC Wesleyan fought back to tie the game early in the second quarter when junior running back Bryan Haywood capped a nine-play, 57-yard drive with a 1-yard touchdown rush.

Swallow and McCafferty connected on a 13-yard touchdown pass with 42 seconds left in the first half, but Grabner’s extra-point attempt was blocked, making it a 13-7 W&J lead.

The Bishops assumed their first lead of the game, 14-13, just 12 seconds later when Haywood raced 87 yards down the NCWC sideline for a touchdown on the ensuing kickoff.

The run was the longest kickoff return in program history and the first-ever for a TD.
Wesleyan took the 14-13 lead into intermission, but it was short-lived as Swallow found

McCafferty for their third touchdown (19 yards) on the first possession of the third quarter. Swallow’s two-point conversion pass to junior wideout David Ravida made it a 21-14 game.

The Blue & Gold wasted little time in tying the contest as senior quarterback Cedric Townsend lofted a 40-yard scoring pass to sophomore wide receiver Orlando Webb on a third-and-long play just over three minutes later.

The score remained tied at 21-21 until the 14:26 mark of the third quarter when W&J junior running back Kevin Mathews bolted nine yards through the middle of the NCWC defense for a 28-21 President lead.

The Bishops answered quickly once again as Haywood’s 35-yard kickoff return helped set up his own 3-yard touchdown rush with 11:25 remaining in the game.

The Presidents’ ensuing drive stalled at the NCWC 46-yard line, but junior Zack Zebrasky’s punt was fumbled at the 27-yard line and recovered by W&J freshman Craig Sedunov. W&J drove to the NCW 2-yard line, but had to settle for a 22-yard Grabner field-goal attempt, which was blocked by junior Davon Collins with 4:35 left to play.

Townsend marched the Bishops into W&J territory, setting up a Vaughn 29-yard field-goal attempt with seven seconds left. Vaughn’s kick, however, missed wide left, and the teams headed to overtime.

Wesleyan had the first possession in the extra period, and Townsend scored on the fourth play of the drive from three yards out. Vaughn’s extra-point (pictured above) put the Bishops in front 35-28.
Swallow fired his fourth touchdown pass of the game on the Presidents’ fourth play, hitting Ravida on a 3-yard strike. W&J’s fake extra-point rush attempt was stopped, and the Bishops earned their first-ever NCAA playoff victory.

Townsend completed 19-of-29 passes for 221 yards and one touchdown, while also rushing for 97 yards on 23 attempts. Sophomore running back Teron Bush added 85 yards on 13 carries, while Haywood added 21 yards on the ground. Bush led NCWC receivers with six receptions for 36 yards.

The Bishop defense was led by senior linebacker Justin Augustin’s 11 tackles and two pass breakups.

Swallow finished with 265 passing yards (25-of-39 attempts) and four scores to finish the season with 46 touchdown passes. Mathews gained 103 yards on 24 carries, while McCafferty closed his career with a nine-catch, 147-yard receiving day.

Senior cornerback Doug Melton led the Presidents’ defense with 13 tackles and three pass breakups.

The Bishops outgained W&J by a 474-360 margin, including 253 yards on the ground. NC Wesleyan converted 12-of-17 third-down situations.

Wesleyan, the bracket’s No. 8 seed, advances to next Saturday’s second round game at fourth-seeded Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton, Texas. Game time is slated for 12:00 CST.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Congrats Battling Bishops!!

Hats off to Jack Ginn and the North Carolina Wesleyan Battling Bishops football team!

In only their fourth season, they will play in the NCAA Division III Football Championship playoffs beginning Saturday at Washington and Jefferson College in Washington, Pa - just south of Pittsburgh.

Below is a release from W&J's website:

WASHINGTON, Pa. -- Washington & Jefferson College was awarded a No. 1 seed for the NCAA Division III football playoffs and will host eighth-seeded North Carolina Wesleyan in a first-round matchup on Saturday at Cameron Stadium. Kickoff is set for noon.

The Presidents (10-0) completed the regular season undefeated for the ninth time in the 116-year history of the program. W&J is making its 19th appearance in the NCAA playoffs in the past 23 years and holds a 19-18 record in postseason play. Washington & Jefferson earned the Presidents’ Athletic Conference’s automatic bid after claiming its 22nd PAC title in history.

North Carolina Wesleyan (8-2) started the season with losses to NCAA playoff teams Wesley (34-31) and Widener (27-17), but has won eight consecutive games, including a 7-0 USA South Conference record. The Bishops became the first team in conference history to post an undefeated record in league play.

The Bishops have one of the nation’s most balanced offenses as they average 226.8 yards rushing and 226.2 yards passing per game (453.0 ypg). NC Wesleyan has turned the ball over 25 times, but the defense has forced 39 turnovers, including 22 interceptions which ranks third in Division III.
The NCW offense centers around senior quarterback Cedric Townsend (Kenansville, N.C./James Kenan), who ranks 35th in the nation in total offense (245.8 ypg). Townsend is a dual threat as he has completed 55 percent (138-251) of his passes for 1,980 yards and 20 touchdowns, while also rushing for 478 yards and 13 scores.

Senior linebacker Justin Augustin (Midway Park, N.C./White Oak) is the leader of the defense. He has collected 61 tackles, including 6.5 for a loss, and has forced and recovered three fumbles.
The Presidents are led by junior quarterback Bobby Swallow (Salem, Ohio/West Branch), who has led all NCAA divisions in pass efficiency (197.0) for the past seven weeks. Swallow set W&J’s single-season passing touchdown record with 42, while only tossing three interceptions. He has completed just under 70 percent (204-292) for 2,841 yards.

Junior linebacker David Gitlitz (Columbus, Ohio/Bexley) paces the defense with 94 tackles, including 14.5 for a loss.
Wesley (9-1) is the bracket’s No. 2 seed and will take on ODAC champion No. 7 Hampden-Sydney (8-2). Centennial Conference winner Muhlenberg (10-0) was awarded the No. 3 seed and hosts fifth-seeded Salisbury (9-1), while fourth-seeded Mary Hardin-Baylor (9-1) hosts No. 6 Trinity (Texas) in the final first-round game of the region.
The W&J-NCW winner will take on the winner of the Trinity-UMHB victor on Nov. 24th in the NCAA second round at the site of the highest remaining seed.

Rocky Mount posts first playoff shutout in 45 years

How historically significant was Rocky Mount's 28-0 playoff win over Union Pines last Friday night?

It was the first time in since 1962 that a Rocky Mount football team had posted a shutout in postseason play. Strange, you would have thought it would have happened at least once more since then, but it hasn't.

Here is a look back at all 38 playoff games Rocky Mount has played since September 1953 - the first month football was played with players attending the S. Tillery St. campus. Rocky Mount has a winning record in playoff action: 21-17:

2007: Rocky Mount 28, Union Pines 0
2006: Western Alamance 41, Rocky Mount 37
2006: Rocky Mount 32, Hertford County 16
2006: Rocky Mount 65, Gray's Creek 14
2005: Western Alamance 30, Rocky Mount 10
2005: Rocky Mount 21, Beddingfield 20
2005: Rocky Mount 21, SW Edgecombe 7
2005: Rocky Mount 35, Northern Vance 18
2004: JH Rose 15, Rocky Mount 13
2004: Rocky Mount 40, Middle Creek 7
2004: Rocky Mount 45, Cape Fear 20
2003: Jack Britt 24, Rocky Mount 17
2002: Wakefield 41, Rocky Mount 33
1997: Cary 9, Rocky Mount 7
1996: Richmond County 26, Rocky Mount 3
1990: EE Smith 24, Rocky Mount 14
1990: Rocky Mount 15, New Bern 3
1985: Terry Sanford 31, Rocky Mount 21
1981: Terry Sanford 27, Rocky Mount 7
1981: Rocky Mount 21, Seventy-First 6
1981: Rocky Mount 28, Enloe 13
1979: JH Rose 36, Rocky Mount 7
1979: Rocky Mount 28, Jacksonville 27
1979: Rocky Mount 35, Pine Forest 14
1977: East Mecklenburg 28, Rocky Mount 9
1977: Rocky Mount 25, Pine Forest 22
1977: Rocky Mount 20, Jacksonville 13
1977: Rocky Mount 14, Goldsboro 13 (OT)
1976: Eastern Wayne 10, Rocky Mount 7
1973: Sanford Central 28, Rocky Mount 0
1973: Rocky Mount 9, EE Smith 7
1964: W-S Reynolds 14, Rocky Mount 6
1963: Rocky Mount 14, W-S Reynolds 13
1963: Rocky Mount 42, Greensboro Page 0
1962: Rocky Mount 20, W-S Reynolds 6
1962: Rocky Mount 21, Myers Park 6
1961: Garinger 21, Rocky Mount 0
1959: Garinger 13, Rocky Mount 6

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Tyler has great day in loss

Jason Tyler continued to pile up the passing yards for West Hills Community College (Ca.) last Saturday, but his Falcons lost a heartbreaking 29-28 decision to College of the Sequoias last Friday.

The former Gryphon signal caller was 36 for 67 for 422 yards and three touchdowns, but it wasn't enough as West Hills' kicker missed a field goal in the final seconds that would given it the victory.

Tyler will conclude his freshman season as quarterback Saturday when West Hills hosts Delta College.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

The Football Series: Rocky Mount vs. Northern Nash

These two old rivals have been facing each other in football since 1969. Friday, they will meet for the 39th time - this time at Death Valley. Rocky Mount holds the series lead at 21-17 and has won the last four meetings.

The Gryphons can tie a record in the series with a win Friday. RMHS can win for the fifth straight meeting - something Northern did from 1985 to 1989.

Rocky Mount has posted five shutouts in the series - including the last three contests. The Knights have never recorded one.

Strangely, no one in the series scored 30 points or more for the first 17 meetings until Northern did the trick with a 34-14 victory in 1986.

And in case you're wondering who has scored the most points in the series, Rocky Mount leads 763 points to Northern's 634.

Here's all the games. I will try to add a significant fact about some of the games!

  • 2006 - RM won 54-0 - (NN only picked up three first downs in this one)
  • 2005 - RM won 21-0 - (Kendrick Dean's fake handoff fooled NN on an 86-yd. KO)
  • 2004 - RM won 40-0
  • 2003 - RM won 21-14 - (Stephon Virgil's 90-yard punt return for a TD was big)
  • 2002 - NN won 47-6 - (NN won this one going away - played at Nash Central)
  • 2001 - NN won 48-13 - (RM led 13-0, but NN took over in the second period)
  • 2000 - NN won 48-28 - (NN piles up 23 first downs en route to the victory)
  • 1999 - NN won 21-20 - (NN racked up 455 total yds. in the win)
  • 1998 - RM won 21-7 - (RM's Gary Cobb returned an INT for a TD)
  • 1997 - RM won 28-12 - (Linwood Silver's 99-yd. KO return broke this one open)
  • 1996 - RM won 39-12 - (RM's Roman Kelley tosses four TD passes)
  • 1995 - RM won 14-12 - (RM recorded two safeties in this contest)
  • 1994 - NN won 54-31 - (RM gave up a record 523 yards rushing to NN)
  • 1993 - NN won 28-12
  • 1992 - RM won 13-7 OT
  • 1991 - NN won 21-19
  • 1990 - RM won 35-7
  • 1989 - NN won 20-18
  • 1988 - NN won 21-6
  • 1987 - NN won 13-10 OT
  • 1986 - NN won 34-14 - (NN picked off six Tim Kilpatrick passes in this one)
  • 1985 - NN won 14-12
  • 1984 - RM won 20-7
  • 1983 - RM won 21-14
  • 1982 - NN won 21-13
  • 1981 - NN won 21-16
  • 1980 - RM won 21-18
  • 1979 - RM won 21-14
  • 1978 - RM won 22-0
  • 1977 - RM won 23-6
  • 1976 - NN won 20-6
  • 1975 - NN won 18-6 - (Craig Smith led NN to a win - the coldest NN-RM game ever!)
  • 1974 - RM won 21-7
  • 1973 - RM won 28-16
  • 1972 - RM won 21-6
  • 1971 - NN won 14-8
  • 1970 - RM won 21-12
  • 1969 - RM won 20-0