ER routs PG on Homecoming

Stephanie King

It was homecoming at Eastern Randolph on Friday as they hosted their rival Providence Grove. Eastern Randolph came into Friday’s contest with a 1-4 record on the season, while the Patriots were 1-3. Before the game, the Wildcats inducted the inaugural class of the Eastern Randolph High School Hall of Fame. Inductees were Grady Lawson, Burton Cates, Scott Riddle, Kelly Smith, Lorraine Owen Watson, Nina Foust, Brian Wright, Andy Headen, Matt Brown, Alan Hooker, Rodney Wilson, and Mickey Burgess.

Eastern Randolph won the coin toss, but elected to defer until the second half. Providence Grove’s Andrew Poteat picked up a couple of first downs during the Patriots’ first drive of the night. Unfortunately, the Patriots would fumble the ball after Poteat’s second first down. Eastern Randolph recovered and went to work moving the ball down the field. Kody Wildcats found Tyrese Cassidy for a big first down. The Wildcats were unable to find the end zone for a touchdown, but Gonzalo Mendes stepped up and kicked a field goal on fourth down to give ER a 3-0 lead.

Providence Grove took over after the field goal, but could not get much going as they fumbled the ball for a second time. Eastern Randolph recovered the fumble with enough time left in the quarter to score a touchdown. Wilder found Cassidy for a 49-yard touchdown pass moments later. Cassidy broke several tackles on his way to the end zone. The extra point attempt by Mendes was no good as the Wildcats took a 9-0 lead over the Patriots. Patrick Lennon played excellent defense for the Wildcats as he sacked quarterback Cade Snotherly to force a fourth down. Providence Grove ended up punting the ball just before the end of the quarter. After one quarter, Eastern Randolph led 9-0.

The Wildcats had trouble to start the second quarter as the Providence Grove defense forced them to punt on fourth down. It looked like the Patriots had a touchdown on the first play of the next drive, but an illegal forward pass penalty brought the ball back. Providence Grove would put the ball on the ground as Xavier Andrews scored moments later for the Patriots. Diego Suarez’s extra point attempt was good, cutting the Wildcats’ lead to two. Eastern Randolph responded quickly on their next drive as Cassidy and Zion Warner picked up some big runs, capped off by a 16-yard touchdown run by Warner. The extra point was good giving the Wildcats a 16-7 lead. The lead would hold until halftime as both teams were forced to punt on their final possessions of the second quarter.

Eastern Randolph wasted no time scoring in the second half as Wildcats found Cassidy for a 54-yard touchdown pass. Mendes nailed the extra point attempt, giving the Wildcats a 23-7 lead. Providence Grove picked up three first down on their next possession, but ended up not being able to convert on fourth down and turned the ball over. Warner and Tavis McAdoo helped move the ball up the field for the Wildcats on their following possession. Eastern Randolph capped off the drive with a touchdown pass from Wilder to Cassidy. The Wildcats would take a 30-7 lead after the extra point from Mendes. Both teams would be forced to punt on their next possessions. Providence Grove ended up fumbling the ball on their last possession of the third quarter and the Wildcats recovered. McAdoo and Warner picked up first downs for the Wildcats just before the third quarter ended. After three quarters, Eastern Randolph led 30-7.

Warner made a short run into the end zone just four seconds into the fourth quarter to give the Wildcats a 36-7 lead. Mendes’ extra point gave the Wildcats a 37-7 lead. Providence Grove moved the ball down the field on their next possession and forced a penalty on the Wildcats giving themselves a first down on fourth down. Unfortunately, Snotherly would have his pass picked off by JB Farrish just a few yards from the end zone. McAdoo and Warner picked up four first downs for the Wildcats before Preston Gladden capped off the drive with a 39-yard touchdown run. Eastern Randolph would take a 44-7 lead after the extra point from Mendes. Providence Grove needed just a few plays to get the ball in the end zone as Andrews scored. The extra point was good, cutting the lead to 44-14. Eastern Randolph tried to put another one in the end zone before the end of the game, but had to settle for a field goal attempt on fourth down. The attempt was no good, but the Wildcats walked away with a 44-14 win over the Patriots.

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