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McCarthy's record-setting night leads Pinecrest Academy over Walker
WalkerPinecrest 7 091414 web
Pinecrest Academy’s Nick Palmer, left, helps tackle Walker’s Glenn Strother. The Paladins held the Wolverines to just 210 total yards of offense Friday in their 42-14 victory. - photo by Micah Green

Pinecrest Academy 42, Walker 14

Walker 0 7 0 7–14

Pinecrest Acad. 14 21 0 7–42

First Quarter

PA: Walters 50 run (kick good), 11:38

PA: Ojeda 15 run (kick good), 3:32

Second Quarter

W: Pittinger 2 run (kick good), 10:07

PA: McCarthy 66 run (kick good), 9:49

PA: McCarthy 19 run (kick good), 7:24

PA: McCarthy 67 run (kick good), 3:57

Fourth Quarter

W: Reini 80 field goal return (kick good), 5:44


PA: Mangan 62 run (kick good), 4:14

By midway through the fourth quarter, Pinecrest Academy quarterback Ryan McCarthy’s night was done.

The Paladins were well on their way to a 42-14 victory over the Walker Wolverines, and McCarthy had already broken the school’s single-game rushing record.

McCarthy ended his night with 212 rushing yards on 10 attempts and three touchdowns, breaking the previous record set by former running back Andrew Wilborn almost a year ago to the day when Wilborn rushed for 208 yards against Mt. Vernon Presbyterian.

"I just put all the support on my linemen," McCarthy said. "They were working hard out there for me by blocking people.

"It’s an honor to break the record but I really give it all to my line."

McCarthy did most of his damage in the pivotal second quarter to help Pinecrest pull away.

The Paladins led 14-7 after the first quarter. Then McCarthy took over. He ran for touchdowns of 66, 19 and 67 yards to give Pinecrest a 35-7 lead at halftime.

McCarthy rushed for 152 yards and three touchdowns on only three carries in the second quarter.

"I also want to give a lot of credit to [fullback] Matthew Walters," McCarthy said. "He gets hit every single play and it means a lot to me that he is willing to take the beating."

The Paladins did not seem to be too worried about balance on offense. Pinecrest only attempted two passes the whole game both resulting in incompletions. The balance of their offense came from the multitude of running backs that carried the ball. Along with the rushing performances from McCarthy and back-up quarterback Jake Mangan (4 carries, 72 yards, 1 TD), the Paladins had four other ball carriers. Mitchell Ojeda (9 carries, 99 yards, 1 TD) and Walters (6 carries, 70 yards, 1 TD) highlighted the Pinecrest backfield.

The Paladins’ offense got off to a strong start. On just the second play of the game, Walters sprinted through the Walker defense on his way to a 50-yard touchdown to start the scoring for the Paladins. After an interception by Nick Palmer and the Paladin defense, it was back to the Pinecrest offense to score once more. Mitchell Ojeda capped off a seven-play drive with a 15-yard touchdown run to give the Paladins an early 14-0 lead on Walker.

Down 14-0 and starting on their own 23 yard-line, Walker started the second quarter scoring by putting together their second longest drive of the night resulting in a 2-yard touchdown run by quarterback James Pittinger.

Mangan relieved McCarthy in the fourth quarter for the Paladins. Although the quarterback was different for Pinecrest the result was much of the same. Mangan led the offense down field one more time and capped off a scoring drive himself with a 62-yard touchdown run.

Although Walker might have been down the whole game, the Wolverines did not stop playing hard. With 6 minutes left in the game, Pinecrest was set to kick a 20-yard field goal only to have it blocked. Jake Reini of the Wolverines blocked and proceeded to scoop up the football. With an army of Wolverine blockers, Reini returned the blocked kick all the way to the endzone for an 80-yard touchdown.