HUNTERSVILLE – Behind a pair of highlight reel touchdown catches and a stingy defense, North Meck held on to beat West Meck 21-16 Friday night.
A big homecoming crowd saw the Vikings move to 4-2 and 2-1 in the Queen City 3A/4A, the first time the team has been two games over .500 since 2017. North only won one game each of the last two seasons but have doubled that total with three games to in coach Damon McKee’s second season.
“That’s what we need to do, we want to bring the joy coming back to football games,” McKee said. “Winning is a cure-all, fix-all. We want to bring some pride back on Friday night. More importantly we want these boys to have fun and have a hell of a senior year.”
The Vikings held a 21-7 lead until mid-way through the fourth, when West (3-5, 0-4) connected on a short field goal that still put them two scores behind. North had trouble with the ensuing kickoff and started on their own 5 yard line. With 4:13 left in the game, Hawks defensive back Neko Brown intercepted a John Geter pass and returned it down the left sideline for a touchdown.
Instead of going for 2 to make it a 3-point game, West missed the extra-point.
After a short Vikings punt, West got the ball back one last time with 50 seconds left and no timeouts, but was unable to complete the comeback.
“Just finish it,” McKee said of his message to the defense. “Sideline to sideline, goalpost to goalpost. As simple as that.”
The Vikings got on the board with 5 minutes left in the first when Jahlani Biddersingh hauled in a Geter pass in the corner of the end zone with a Hawks defender in his face. The score was set up by Geter connecting with Lewis Blamoh Jr. down the sideline.
North’s final score came when a Geter pass was deflected off one receiver, but Biddersingh caught it in the back of the end zone, making sure his feet were in.
“That’s what we expect out of Jahlani,” McKee said. “Our receiving corps, Jeffrey (McDonald), those guys are the seniors. They carry this thing. … When those guys are on, we are unstoppable.”
McKee said since a few of his offensive lineman were injured, the team didn’t give Cam Alford as many carries as usual.
“We want to be as balanced as we can,” McKee said. “We had to overcome the adversity and come out with a W.”
Following West Meck’s first touchdown that tied the game at 7 early in the 3rd quarter, North’s DeMarius Alexander took the ensuing kickoff back for a touchdown.
The Vikings faced the challenge of coming off their first win over Mallard Creek in 13 years Oct. 1 to focus on the Hawks, who lost their fifth straight after a 3-0 start. In the post game huddle, North players expressed their displeasure with letting West hang around.
“You get way, way up there for Mallard,” McKee said. “It’s Homecoming, so much going on, distractions all throughout the buildings. Our guys didn’t practice the way they need to practice. The kids recognize it, they own it.”
Hough 37, West Charlotte 17
Mooresville 42, South Iredell 7
Hickory Ridge 27, Lake Norman 0 (Thurs.)
Pine Lake Prep 35, Bishop McGuinness 0
Mountain Island Charter 60, Christ the King 6
Lake Norman Charter 48, Bear Grass Charter 6
East Lincoln 57, Fred T. Foard 0
North Lincoln 26, St. Stephens 0
Maiden 46, Bandys 0