By R. Sirvell Carter
NEW HOPE —
New Hope controlled the game from its first play from scrimmage in a dominating first half of play.
The Indians jumped out to a commanding halftime lead over Good Hope and coasted to a 55-27 homecoming win Friday.
New Hope (4-1) scored on six of its seven first-half possessions to take a 42-0 advantage into the locker room en route to handing the Raiders (3-2, 2-1 in Class 3A, Region 7) its second straight loss.
Adam Browner passed for 173 yards and three touchdowns and also rushed for a score.
Zack Manley had nine catches for 115 yards and two touchdowns, and freshman Brett Clark rushed for 103 yards on nine carries. He also connected on seven extra points.
Clark got 65 of those yards on the game’s first play from scrimmage when he burst for a touchdown that put New Hope on top for good.
“We weren’t really surprised that moved the ball like that,” Browner said. “Our coaches did a great job of gameplanning. Everybody was on the same page tonight.”
Good Hope was without starting quarterback Sebastion Fendley for a second consecutive week. Fendley broke his left forearm two Friday ago against Winston County. Freshman Riley Eisner started for the Raiders and threw two touchdown passes in the second half — a 6-yarder to Justin Turner and a 21-yarder to Kainan Smith.
New Hope’s defense stifled Good Hope in the first half as the scoring margin got out of hand.
“We came out really hyped up,” said Jake Wilbourn, who led New Hope with 11 tackles and scored on a 2-yard run late in the first half. “We just came out aggressive. I like the way we’ve been playing on defense, more physical than we have been in the past.”
New Hope, however, showed up well prepared regardless of who started at quarterback for the Raiders.
“We challenged them all week long about being mentally focused,” Indians’ coach Randall Taylor said. “We were able to get a big lead there in the first half. We got a lot of young men some reps as well. It was a good night for us and a good homecoming win for the students.”
Good Hope’s Jared McClure scored on a 3-yard run early in the third quarter, and fellow back Jonathan Burnette reached the end zone from 6 yards out to open the fourth.
New Hope will travel to Pisgah on Friday. Good Hope will host Danville.