Pinecrest 41, Whitefield 0
Whitefield Acad. 0 0 0 0_0
Pinecrest Acad. 13 14 7 7_41
PA_Holler 97 kick return (missed PAT), 11:45
PA_McCarthy 2 run (kick good), 7:22
PA_McCarthy 1 run (kick good), 9:44
PA_J. Binkley 49 pass from McCarthy (kick good), 8:07
PA_McCarthy 3 run (kick good), 7:56
PA_Holler 60 run (kick good), 9:37
This game was never in question as Pinecrest Academy blanked Whitefield Academy 41-0 on senior night on Friday.
“Goal number one was to get a shutout,” Pinecrest head coach Todd Winter said. “Goal number two was to execute the offense and I felt like we did that. The team played hard tonight, they played for each other, and they just came ready to play. It was a great senior night.”
Carson Holler got the barrage started by going untouched on his way to a 97-yard touchdown on the game’s opening kickoff to give Pinecrest (5-3, 4-2 in Region 6-A, Div. B) an early 6-0 lead.
“It was awesome, I couldn’t ask for anything else,” Holler said. “We may come back for a playoff game, but regular season, last home game as a senior, you can’t ask for much more.”
Holler was also the game’s leading rusher with just five carries for 89 yards and a touchdown. His 60-yard scamper early in the fourth quarter put the final nail in the coffin for the Wolfpack (2-6, 1-5).
“I thought we did great,” Holler said, “I thought our offensive line really stepped up, I thought our defense made some good plays, every time you shutout someone you’re doing something right. I thought our quarterback Ryan [McCarthy] did really well, it was a good team win.”
Ryan McCarthy went 4-for-9 for 82 yards through the air with a touchdown and an interception. He connected with fellow senior Jack Binkley on a 49-yard bomb in the second quarter that put the Paladins up 27-0. But McCarthy did most of his damage on the ground with 13 carries for 49 yards and two touchdowns.
Pinecrest’s offense racked up 337 yards from scrimmage, and as usual, the vast majority of it came from their physical rushing attack that accounted for 255 of those yards.
“Honestly I think the key to the game was the weight room,” Winter said. “We physically were just stronger than they were. That’s why you work so hard in the offseason so that you can push people around.”
You can’t say enough about the Paladins’ defense in this game, pitching a shutout and holding the Wolfpack to a mere 45 total yards in the game including zero yards on the ground. Whitefield Academy was in third and long all night. The Paladins held them to 1-for-11 on third down conversions, with the lone conversion coming with a minute left in the game and the Paladin’s junior varsity on the field.
Holler, Corey Downes, and Ethan Massey each recorded an interception, while Stone Brown recorded the team’s one sack.
“I thought the defense played well,” Winter said. “I don’t know how may first downs they had, two maybe? We made some changes in defense this week as far as our pursuit and I think it really paid off. Defense wins championships. We gotta continue to get better. The most important game is game eleven. And we gotta be ready to play in game eleven.”