Centennial 27, North Forsyth 3
Centennial 7 14 0 6_27
North Forsyth 3 0 0 0_3
NF: FG Whitten 20, 7:12
C: Martinez 5 run (kick good), 2:48
C: Kelley 4 pass from Conway (kick good), 9:01
C: Kelley 80 pass from Conway (kick good), 0:27
C: Turk 9 run (kick no good), 6:20
North Forsyth was outmatched by Centennial on their way to a 27-3 loss on senior night on Friday.
"A lack of consistency is what’s hurt us all year," North head coach Jason Galt said. "And that comes with youth. We have 16 seniors, and a lot of juniors and sophomores, and when you play a lot of young guys, that’s what’s going to happen. That’s been the story of our team all year, lack of consistency."
North (1-7, 1-6 Region 6-AAAAAA) had a strong start to begin the game. They forced a three-and-out on the opening drive then got a 20-yard field goal from Jacob Whitten to grab a 3-0 lead in the first quarter.
Centennial (5-3, 5-2) didn’t let the lead last for long. The Knights had two physical 66-yard touchdown drives to go up 14-3 early in the second quarter. The first drive went 13 plays, ate up just over four minutes of clock and ended with a 5-yard touchdown run from Luther Martinez. The Knights’ next drive went 11 plays and took just under four minutes, ending with a 4-yard touchdown pass from Casen Conway to James Kelley.
The Knights had a well-balanced attack and finished the game with 184 yards rushing, 165 passing and racked up 18 first downs.
"We were really focused tonight," Centennial head coach Jeff Carlberg said. "I thought our guys came out and played really physically and really set the tone early in the game."
After a fumble gave Centennial the ball on their side of the 50, Conway attempted a pass that was deflected and intercepted by Colton Miller in Knights’ territory. The Raiders were unable to turn the Knights’ mistake into points when Jose Boyzo came up short on a 44-yard field goal attempt.
And to compound the mistake, on the first play of the Knights’ ensuing drive, Conway hit Kelley on a wide receiver screen that he took 80 yards to the house with under a minute left in the first half.
"It was par for the course," Galt said. "This is how it’s been all season. We do some good things then shoot ourselves in the foot."
North managed just 29 yards from scrimmage and two first downs in the first half, but showed vast improvement in the second half.
In the second half, the Raiders gained 115 yards on the ground, 64 through the air and picked up nine first downs. Unfortunately, three of their four second-half drives ended with stops on fourth down.
"We challenged our guys in the second half," Galt said. "We made one little adjustment in the second half, nothing big, but it was really just a matter of executing better. We had some long drives but we still made too many mistakes to win the game."
But despite another Raiders loss, Galt liked the way his team fought till the end.
"The last two weeks have been better about kids not giving up," Galt said. "Tonight we kept fighting. And as a coach, that’s all you can ask for."