YORK — Seeking to rebound from last week’s 45-15 loss to No. 1-ranked Northwestern, the resurgent York Comprehensive High School football team shifts its thoughts to another marquee game in Region 3-AAAA.
The Cougars will host perennial region powerhouse South Pointe Friday, with a large crowd expected for the 7:30 p.m. kickoff.
Cougar head football coach Bobby Carroll is familiar with the South Pointe program he built from scratch before returning to his hometown to resurrect the York program.
“South Pointe is a big and talented football team,” Carroll said. “They’ve had to overcome adversity and have met the challenge.”
Carroll said Friday’s clash of York County heavyweights has playoff implications.
“The winner of our game with South Pointe should be in a position to host playoff games as the No. 2 team in the region,” said Carroll. “The loser likely would finish third in the region and would begin the playoffs on the road.”
Coach Straight Herron’s Stallions have reached elite status, having gone 26-3 the two years prior to this season.
South Pointe took advantage of turnovers and played stout defense in defeating Clover’s Blue Eagles 42-0 last week.
South Pointe’s lone region loss this season was to Northwestern.
With an estimated crowd of 4,000 in the visitors’ stands at Rock Hill’s District Three Stadium on Friday, the YCHS team was greeted with a thunderous roar when the Cougars took the opening kickoff against Northwestern and marched 72 yards for the game’s first score.
Junior quarterback DeShaw Andrews rambled 28 yards for first-down yardage at the Trojan 44. Later, Andrews’ 20-yard toss to Markel Castle gave the Cougars first-down yardage at the 12.
Next came a 12-yard scoring toss from Andrews to wide receiver Daurice Simpson, with bulldozer Ryan Moore penetrating the end zone for the 2-point conversion and an 8-7 York lead.
Northwestern wasted little time, setting sail on an 80-yard drive that culminated with Shrine Bowl quarterback selection Mason Rudolph scoring from a yard out.
Rudolph had a big game through the air, passing for 400-plus yards as the Trojans built and expanded the lead.
Moore churned out 94 yards on the ground against a stingy Trojan defense and Andrews rushed for 66 yards.
The Cougars scored a late touchdown when Andrews found the end zone from a yard out.
“Northwestern beat us in the trenches on both sides of the ball,” Carroll said after the game. “They took us behind the woodshed.”
Though they were disappointed in the loss , Cougar senior mainstays Thomas Broom and Jerome Pettiway said the team’s goals are still in front of them.
“We’ll have to put this behind us and get ready for South Pointe,” said Broom, an offensive lineman, as he was leaving the field Friday night. “Our goal to win a state championship is still there.”
Pettiway, the team’s punter and backup quarterback, agreed.
“We have a lot to play for,” said Pettiway. “The key is to work on the fundamentals of the game and to execute.”