South Johnston’s varsity football dominated from wire to wire in a 62-14 rout over visiting Quad County 3-A Conference opponent Southern Wayne on the Trojans’ Homecoming on Friday night.
“We said two weeks ago after that loss to Fike (41-32 at home on Sept. 23) that we weren’t worried because we knew on Monday we were going to bounce back,” said South Johnston coach Lee Webb. “We didn’t start playing until the third quarter against C.B. Aycock (a 36-35 road win last Friday), but once we started playing, that’s how we were supposed to be. And that was our focus this week was playing from the first snap to the last snap and these guys did that.”
Senior Brayden Barefoot ran for 146 yards and two touchdowns on three carries and had a six-yard touchdown reception and senior Jaydn McNeill, the Homecoming King, had two receptions for 63 yards and a touchdown and returned a kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown to lead the Trojans (6-1, 3-1 QCC).
Paul Olive was six-of-nine passing for 98 yards and four touchdowns, with one interception, and ran for 26 yards on three carries. C.J. Redmond had two receptions for 61 yards and a touchdown. Elliot Butler completed his lone pass attempt for a 53-yard touchdown. Brandon Giles ran for 34 yards on three carries. Zack Sellers had an 11-yard touchdown reception. Brayden Fair had a 10-yard touchdown reception and an interception on defense. Jyseim Wells had a five-yard carry. Landon Jarman recovered a fumble on defense. Lance Parker blocked a punt and Braxton Ennis returned it for a touchdown.
“It’s good (getting many players involved), especially getting some of those twos in there,” Webb said. “We’ve got a lot of seniors that will be leaving us after this year. Getting those twos reps that are going to have to step up next year for us is good. And they had a good game overall. We’ve got a great group of seniors and we’ve got a great junior class behind them. The sky’s the limit with these guys.”
Sophomore Jahmere Bannerman was seven-of-18 passing for 80 yards and two touchdowns, with one interception, junior Adam Cain ran for 43 yards on 14 carries and senior Kevin Brown had two receptions for 38 yards and a touchdown and an interception on defense to lead the Saints (1-5, 0-3.
The Trojans jumped out to a 21-0 lead on a 72-yard Barefoot run, followed by an Angel Rodriguez extra point, a blocked punt by Parker returned by Ennis for a touchdown, followed by a Barefoot run for two, and a 10-yard Olive-to-Fair pass, with a missed extra point.
Early in the second quarter, Bannerman connected with Christopher Carmon for an eight-yard touchdown and then threw to Brown for two.
South then scored 34 unanswered points on, with McNeill scoring on a 95-yard kick return, a safety after a bad snap on a Saints punt, a 61-yard Olive-to-McNeill pass, a six-yard Olive-to-Barefoot pass, a 55-yard Barefoot run and an 11-yard Olive-to-Sellers pass. Rodriguez and Butler each made an extra point in that mix.
Southern Wayne got a late score on a 10-yard Bannerman-to-Brown pass, but the conversion attempt failed.
South scored on the following drive when Redmond took a screen pass from Butler 53 yards for a touchdown. Butler also kicked the extra point.
South Johnston travels to conference opponent Hunt (6-1, 4-0) on Friday.
“I don’t care what team it is, every week we’re playing for a conference championship,” Webb said. “That’s just the mentality that we have to bring. Next week’s a big game. The week after that with East Wake (at home Oct. 22) is a big game. The week after that, at the end, that’s the biggest rivalry game in the county, probably (at home against West Johnston Oct. 29), coming up. So, we are playing for a conference championship the next three weeks.”