In a weather shortened game at Midway Friday night, South Johnston just had too many horses for the Raiders. Midway was looking to improve on a 30-0 loss on the Trojans’ field a year ago.
The game was stopped with 8:36 remaining in the third period with the visitors on top 33-10. Following a half hour delay, the game was determined to be final by mutual consent of the head coaches.
The Raiders got the game’s first possession beginning on their own 37-yard line. Moments later, a fumble placed the ball in Trojan hands. With 7:06 left in the first period, quarterback Austin Raynor connected with Clarence Crawford on a 9-yard pass play for the game’s first score. The 2-point conversion attempt failed and South Johnston held a 6-0 lead.
Midway’s Aaron Thurman then returned the ensuing kickoff 95 yards for a Raider touchdown. Jansen Wrench nailed the extra point, and the home team claimed a 7-6 lead at the 6:51 mark of the opening quarter.
It didn’t take the Trojans long to respond. Following a solid kickoff return by Quincy Williams, Raynor found Victor Burgess on a 24-yard pass for a 12-7 lead. The PAT was unsuccessful. Only 5:31 remained in the quarter.
Thurman then carried the Raiders to a first-and-goal from the 7, but the South Johnston goal line defense tightened up and Midway had to settle for a Wrench field goal with 1:52 left in the period. The Raiders had cut the lead to 12-10.
The ensuing Trojan possession ended in a fumble, recovered by Luke Clark. The Raider offense stalled, however, and they were forced to punt on 4th and 28. The punt was broken up and South Johnston claimed possession at the Midway 47. As the opening period came to a close, Quincy Baggett recovered a Trojan fumble to put the Raider offense back in business.
The home team, however, would not score again Friday night. Following a Raider punt, the visitors’ Quentin Williams found pay dirt with a 27-yard run. The kick was successful and South Johnston posted a 19-10 lead with 9:15 to play in the half.
Following an uneventful Raider possession, Raynor connected with Williams on a 15-yard play and 26-10 lead for the Johnston county guests. The clocked showed 2:28 left in the half. As the final moments passed, the teams swapped turnovers, which included an interception by Midway’s Jeremy Robinson. The Trojans maintained their 26-10 lead at intermission.
As the second half started, storm clouds began to look ominous on the field
The Raiders dodged bullets twice as South Johnston had touchdowns called back due to penalties. However, at the 9:20 mark, Burgess scampered 15 yards for the last score of the evening. The PAT made it 33-10. The home guys fumbled the kickoff, but the storm was at hand and the game was stopped with 8:36 remaining in the third period.
For the Raider offense, Thurman carried 8 times for 31 yards. Troy Spell caught 2 passes for 23 yards. Taylor Calcutt passed for 24 yards, connecting on 3 of 7, with 1 interception.
The Trojans amassed 240 passing yards to go with 86 on the ground.
Troy Spell and Wrench led the way defensively for the Raiders with 5 tackles each.
Each team turned the ball over 3 times.
“They wore us down and we self-destructed,” attested Raider head coach Tommy Sloan. “The defense rose up two times and saved us. They’re a 3A team and they run that spread pretty good.” Sloan stressed, however, that the performance versus the Trojans was an improvement over last year’s game.
The Raiders will host Princeton next Friday.