09/09/18 — PREP FOOTBALL: Well-used timeout aids Goldsboro in 4th quarter

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PREP FOOTBALL: Well-used timeout aids Goldsboro in 4th quarter

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on September 9, 2018 3:05 AM



PIKEVILLE -- Tied at 14-14 with county rival Charles B. Aycock, Goldsoro faced a fourth-and-15 inside four-down territory.

His play sheet in hand, GHS head coach Timothy Ray asked the sideline judge for a timeout.

Ray stepped on the dew-softened turf and talked with his offensive line.

"We talked about keeping our composure and just knowing our assignment, know what we've got to do before we go out," GHS quarterback Brody Morton said. "We had the play and we knew it was going to work. It was a matter of just making sure everybody was lined up, making sure everybody did their job so we could execute and get that first down.

"That was a key play, I think."


Morton zipped a 16-yard completion to Jykeis McLean, which set up Xzavior Bowden's third touchdown -- an 8-yard jaunt with 9:21 left in regulation.

Bowden's short burst capped a 12-play, six-minute drive that put Goldsboro ahead to stay in its come-from-behind, 35-14 victory over the Golden Falcons at Hardy Talton Stadium on Friday evening.

Earlier on the possession, Morton and Terrell Valentine hooked up for back-to-back completions that led to third-down conversions. One covered 10 yards and the other, a 31-yard grab, put the Cougars' inside the Golden Falcons' red zone.

"Valentine, he's one of the best receivers, no doubt," Morton said. "I've got all the trust in him in the world. I just knew that he was going to find a way to be open. [When] he catches the ball, it's going to take about three or four guys to stop him.

"I got him the ball."

Morton's third-quarter connections were a direct opposite of the opening half.

The senior often misfired in an offense that appeared disjointed and confused on occasion by an Aycock defense that pinned back its ears and went toe-to-toe against a bigger and stronger Goldsboro line. Morton said it came down to communication, which the team heartily discussed at halftime.

Another talk also took place.

Ray reminded Bowden that he needed four touchdowns.

The senior responded with a 61-yard gallop just 20 seconds after halftime. His 8-yard run tied the game at 14-14 before Morton orchestrated the 65-yard, go-ahead drive that could have stalled early on a holding infraction.

Bowden's fourth TD was a 55-yard pick six.

"Coach said he needed four touchdowns, so I did what I could," Bowden said. "I'm not going to say we're a second-half team, but we kinda are. We got together at halftime and went to work."

Goldsboro (3-1 overall) shut down a CBA offense that played to near perfection in the opening half.

Sophomore quarterback Clay Matthews directed a pair of scoring drives capped on touchdown runs of 6 and 2 yards by Tae Jackson.

But the Golden Falcons' offense took a major blow in the second quarter.

Matthews hung around in the pocket on a pass that got picked off by Valentine. He took a major hit from the Cougar defense and remained motionless for a minute or two after the play ended. The first-year starter suffered a season-ending injury -- a broken left arm in two places, including his wrist.

"It's like Marquise [Williams] told them, it's adversity," CBA head coach Steve Brooks said. "Most of them have never had to deal with something that tragic. It's not a death or something like that, but when your starting quarterback goes down and everything had been going well to that point, the kids are not used to being in that situation and they don't know how to handle it."

Alijuan Moore and Kaden Jones shared the quarterbacking duties in the second half.

The Cougars held the Golden Falcons to 51 yards of total offense and forced four turnovers, including a pick six by McLean -- his seventh interception of the season.

For the game, Aycock (2-2) converted just one third-down opportunity in nine chances, collected 193 yards of total offense for the game and committed a season-high six turnovers.

"Our strength is our speed and I've been preaching that since day one," said Ray, whose team made a slight adjustment at halftime that allowed his defense to roam a little more freely.

"When we play to that strength, our defense puts points on the board. Our defense has really carried us all season. Once we pick it up on offense, we're going to be a hard team to stop."

Goldsboro returns home Friday for a non-conference date against Nash Central. Aycock concludes its non-conference schedule with a road contest at North Johnston.