RC Overwhelms Waynesboro

RC Overwhelms Waynesboro

THE RC cheerleaders lead the massive crowd of home fans in a cheer during the Wildcats’ homecoming win. (Stephanie Mikels Blevins photo)

RC Overwhelms Waynesboro

ABOVE, Falling to the ground, RC defensive back Zach Bean teams up with Luke Mayr to tackle Waynesboro’s Jordan Gaylor.

RC Overwhelms Waynesboro

AT RIGHT, During the halftime festivities, RC principal Mike Craft congratulates Jada Beck on being crowned as homecoming queen. Seth Bogar was crowned as king. BELOW, Wildcat running back Bret McClung sprints away from the Waynesboro defense to score one of his two touchdowns in the first quarter. (Stephanie Mikels Blevins photos)

RC Overwhelms Waynesboro
Wildcats Cruise To Homecoming Victory, 56-14

Dominating from the first quarter, the Rockbridge County High School football team captured a 56-14 win in its homecoming game against Valley District foe Waynesboro on Friday night in Lexington.

It was a big win to give the Wildcats (5-2 overall, 1-1 district) momentum going into a two-game road stretch, and it was a strong response by RC to bounce back from a 55-10 home loss to defending district champion Spotswood a week earlier.

RC head coach Mark Poston said that, before the Spotswood game, “We had two weeks off, and we really did too much, and it’s a trap that coaches can fall into at times.” Poston said his team continued to work really hard to prepare for Waynesboro. “It feels a lot better getting a win.”

Against Waynesboro (0-7, 0-2), playing in front of a huge home crowd, the Wildcats stormed to a 21-0 lead in the first quarter, as Bret Mc-Clung rushed for two touchdowns, and Gage Shafer ran for one. Shafer’s TD came on the Wildcats’ first drive, as he made a 10-yard run into the end zone with 7:37 left in the period. RC kicker Daniel Cunningham then converted the first of seven successful extra point attempts.

After RC’s defense stopped the Little Giants, the Wildcats quickly scored again when McClung used his speed and agility to maneuver around defenders and sprint away for a 52-yard TD to put RC up 14-0 with 4:25 left in the first quarter.

The Wildcats’ defense again got the ball back quickly, thanks to a fumble recovery by Noah Lawhorne, and McClung made a 26-yard TD run at the end of the quarter.

For the game, McClung led all players with 78 rushing yards on his two TD carries, and Shafer rushed for 68 yards and two TDs on five carries.

Midway through the second quarter, Shafer scored from 10 yards out to extend the Wildcats’ lead to 28-0. Less than three minutes later, RC quarterback Miller Jay tossed a 49-yard TD pass to Jailik Lynch. The Wildcats scored twice following fumble recoveries in the final minute of the half. Jay connected with Luke Mayr on a 48-yard pass and, after RC made a fumble recovery on the ensuing kickoff, Elijah Poindexter ran for a 30-yard TD to make the score 49-0 at halftime.

For the game, Jay completed 5-of-9 passes for 151 yards and two TDs. Mayr led RC’s receivers with 54 yards on two catches. In addition to Lynch’s 49-yard catch on his one reception, Turner Cook stepped up with two catches for 48 yards.

RC’s offense amassed 144 passing yards and 80 rushing yards for 224 total yards, while Waynesboro had 134 rushing yards and 57 yards for 191 total yards. Helping the Wildcats’ offense tremendously was the offensive line. “They had a good hard week of practice,” Poston said. “[Assistant coach] Heath [Glass] does such a wonderful job with those guys.”

During the halftime festivities, Seth Bogar was crowned as RC’s homecoming king, and Jada Beck was crowned as queen.

The Wildcats rested their starters for most of the second half, giving some junior varsity players experience, and the Little Giants managed to score a couple of TDs. It was good to give the Wildcats’ JV players time on the field because they did not have a game last week due to Waynesboro’s lack of a JV team.

After a scoreless third quarter, Jaden Richmond forced a Waynesboro fumble in the fourth quarter, and RC’s Cody Sensabaugh recovered it, but the Waynesboro defense sacked RC quarterback Tucker Hopkins, up from the JV squad, and got the ball back at the RC 25-yard line. After a couple of short runs, Waynesboro’s Jose Ruiz ran for a 3-yard TD to get Waynesboro on the scoreboard with 4:37 left in the game, and quarterback Adam Jackson ran for a two-point conversion to cut RC’s lead to 49-8.

With just over three minutes left, RC freshman Andreas Poindexter scored his first varsity TD on a 30-yard run. For the game, Poindexter rushed for 51 yards on three carries.

Waynesboro scored the final points of the game when Ruiz made a 2-yard run into the end zone with 3.6 seconds left, and Skylar Carson ran for a two-point conversion.

The Wildcats got an excellent effort from their defense, with multiple sacks and tackles for losses. Poston said RC defensive coordinator Mat Rapoza “does a great job with it. … He’s got a pretty unique scheme about how to handle the option stuff, and it works really well.”

Poston said he was glad to get his reserves more experience, as well as being able to rest his starters in the second half. “Win with class,” he said. “You don’t ever want to embarrass anybody.”

Commenting on the Little Giants, who suffered their 18th consecutive loss, Poston said, “I thought Waynesboro played with a lot of class. I thought their kids played hard. … If you’ve been in this high school game long enough, you’re going to have seasons like that where you just don’t have a whole lot, and at those times you’ve got to find a way to hang in there.”

Despite the convincing win, Poston said the Wildcats struggled at times, especially getting their offense going early, and he said they’ll work on that. “We got off to a slow start, and we’ve got to get better,” he said. “The main thing out of tonight is, we’ve got to continue to improve because we’re not good enough to take anybody lightly. We had a good hard week of practice. We had three days in pads, full contact. We might need to go three days in pads, full contact next week. But we got it going and got in a good rhythm. We really simplified a lot of stuff.”

Grateful for the fan support, Poston said, “Our crowd was awesome tonight to come out here and support these kids. Just a great night.”

The Wildcats will continue district action this Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Broadway (0-7, 0-1).

“I know they’ve struggled,” Poston said. “They’ve got a new staff and all that, but those kids hit. When you hit, you’ve got an opportunity”

Poston said last year’s regular-season finale at Broadway, a 24-16 win by the Wildcats on a wet and muddy field, “was a hard, physical game.”

Praising his players and assistant coaches for how they bounced back after a tough loss, Poston said, “Monday and Tuesday and even Wednesday, it was not a fun place to be because we put everything into last week, and to come back and play like we did [against Spotswood], nobody in our program was happy. Everybody felt bad. It just feels a lot better, and I just really wanted to emphasize to the guys on the sidelines that tonight’s a good night. Enjoy it because there are going to be harder roads down in the future, so take tonight and enjoy it.”

WHS 0 0 0 16 16

RC 21 280 7 56

First Quarter

RC – Shafer 10 run (Cunningham kick)

RC – McClung 52 run (Cunningham kick)

RC – McClung 26 run (Cunningham kick)

Second Quarter

RC – Shafer 10 run (Cunningham kick)

RC – Lynch 49 pass from Jay (Cunningham kick)

RC – Mayr 48 pass form Jay (Cunningham kick)

RC – E. Poindexter 30 run (Cunningham kick)

Third Quarter

No scoring

Fourth Quarter

WHS – Ruiz 3 run (Jackson run)

RC – A. Poindexter 30 run (Cunningham kick)

WHS – Ruiz 2 run (Carson run)

WHS RC First downs 9 6 Rushes-yards 35-134 10-80 Passing yards 57 144 Comp-Att-Int 2-5-0 6-11-0 Fumbles-lost 4-3 1-0 Penalties-yards 4-20 2-15

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS RUSHING – WHS, Ruiz 15-68, Jackson 8-31, Gaylor 2-22, Dudley Jr. 3-14, Barbour 4-0, Carson 3-(-1). RC, McClung 2-78, Shafer 5-68, A. Poindexter 3-51, E. Poindexter 1-30, Jay 2-17, Hopkins 4-(-18).

PASSING – WHS, Jackson 2-5-0 57. RC, Jay 5-9-0 151, Hopkins 1-2-0 (-7).

RECEIVING – WHS, Gaylor 2-57. RC, Mayr 2-54, Lynch 1-49, Cook 2-48, A. Poindexter 1-(-7).

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