Rockets pull down Rebels, 26-0

By Kevin Spradlin
PeeDeePost.com

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Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Bobby Terry (second from right) benefits from a block by Taveib Ellerbe (5) en route to a second-quarter touchdown and a 12-0 Rockingham lead.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Bobby Terry (second from right) benefits from a block by Taveib Ellerbe (5) en route to a second-quarter touchdown and a 12-0 Rockingham lead.

EAST ROCKINGHAM — In the closing seconds of the first half, Rockingham Middle School’s football team squandered a chance to go up 18-0 when the quarterback’s pass was deflected into the hands of Rohanen Middle School defensive lineman Trent Simpson.

Rockets coach Patrick Hope wasn’t happy. He was unhappier still when, only 34 seconds into the third quarter, he had to burn a timeout just before the referees blew a whistle for having 12 players on the field.

In the ensuing huddle, Hope talked. His players listened. Then they responded.

The Rockets used a stout defense and a big-play offense to overwhelm host Rohanen on Wednesday to post a 26-0 victory. Rockingham improves to 2-0 on the season.

In the second half, Jahyae Stanback leaped into the air for an interception to end Rohanen’s best scoring opportunity. Even when Rockingham made an error, the Rebels couldn’t capitalize. Twice, Rockets players fumbled the ball in the second half. Twice orange and white recovered the ball and kept the Rebels on defense, including once when offensive lineman Heath Rhyne fell down on a bouncing ball.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Rohanen Middle School's offense struggled throughout against Rockingham. This play was stopped for no positive gain when  Jaheim Covington (33) made the tackle.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Rohanen Middle School’s offense struggled throughout against Rockingham. This play was stopped for no positive gain when Jaheim Covington (33) made the tackle.

With 5:49 to play in the third quarter, Stanback had a scoring run to put Rockingham up 18-0. The two-point conversion attempt was good for a 20-0 lead.

In the final minute of the third quarter facing 4th down and 10 yards to go, quarterback Isiah Crowder connected with standout Bobby Terry on a screen pass. Terry took it up the home team’s sideline for the score to complete the 26-0 margin of victory.

After the game, Hope gathered his players, down on one knee, at one end of the field. He offered words of encouragement and advice. Then he offered a warning.

“You’re going to get every team’s best shot,” Hope said of the Rockets, who went 4-1 last season and are 2-0 this year after the 40-8 shellacking of West Hoke on the road last week.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com Jahyae Stanback takes a leap and brings down the ball for a second-half interception against Rohanen.

Kevin Spradlin | PeeDeePost.com
Jahyae Stanback takes a leap and brings down the ball for a second-half interception against Rohanen.

Still, Hope had to acknowledge: “It feels good to be 2-0.”

The Rockets’ remaining games:

* Oct. 8 vs. Southern
* Oct. 15 at Ellerbe
* Oct. 22 vs. Anson
* Oct. 29 vs. Hamlet
* Nov. 5 championship game

Filed in: Featured News, Latest Headlines, Sports

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