Thursday, October 17, 2013
Following Fox Creek High School’s loss to Williston-Elko, the team needed a bounceback game. They got exactly that on the road at North.
The Predators (5-2, 2-1 Region 4-A) got a monster game from Jaquan Williams, who had just four rushes, but racked up 224 yards and three touchdowns, averaging 56 yards a carry. The one carry that didn’t go for a touchdown was -1 yard.
“Against Williston, it seemed like nothing went our way, but on Friday night, it seemed like everything went our way,” head coach Russ Schneider said. “North is a better team than they were, we just played really well. The ball just bounced our way this week, and the kids did everything right, too. We were more sound, and the kids kept going with what we wanted to do.”
The Predators were without Ikel El, but it proved to be no problem. In addition to Williams’ contributions, Dalton Swires also had two touchdowns and 83 yards and a third score on a 75-yard interception return. Deondre Baskett added a 25-yard run of his own.
Schneider said El may have tendinitis in his knee and that he’s uncertain of whether or not the injury may sideline him any longer. KJ Green, Schneider noted, was slated to be the fullback before El came to the team.
“He stepped up and filled right in and did a phenomenal job,” Schneider said. “He’s maybe a little bit quicker than Ikel, but that comes at the cost of not having as much power to run people over.”
Schneider said Williams was wrapped up on one play by six guys, but he kept churning his legs forward, broke loose and took the ball to the house.
“You have to see it to believe it on film,” he said. “We were telling him to go down, because when you try to get those extra yards is when fumbles tend to happen. It was an amazing run, though.”
The Predators will turn their sights to their final home game this week. Their homecoming match-up will be against Wagener-Salley in a pivotal game for positioning in the region.
“It’s kind of like Ridge Spring, I think we’re going to see a mirror image of ourselves,” Schneider said. “They may be a little bit bigger and quicker, but I think we’re two evenly matched teams. We’ve both had some nail biters, and I have a feeling it could be one of those nights if both teams play well. I think if one of the teams has some turnovers or costly penalties, it could be a deciding factor.”
Scott Rodgers is the news editor at the North Augusta Star.