ELON – It isn’t often that Havelock enters a football game as the underdogs– and it’s even less often that the Rams feel like it.

That was the case when the second-seeded Rams put their 49-game consecutive road winning streak, as well as a trip to the NCHSAA 3A state championship, on the line Friday at No. 1 Western Alamance.

And in the end, Havelock was too much for Western Alamance as the Rams won 41-14.

The Rams won the toss and deferred, which turned out to be big, as Havelock scored first and led 14-7 at the half.

The Rams scored after the half to go up 21-7 and raced out to a 34-7 lead before the Warriors got on the scoreboard again in the fourth quarter.

Havelock tacked on one more on a Cameron Hutchinson 18-yard touchdown run.

The win pushed Havelock to 14-1, the road winning streak to 50-straight games and made a heck of a birthday present for head coach Caleb King.

“It’s all about our process. We expect to be here,” King said. “These guys work in the offseason like state champions now they get to go play for it.”

Senior do-it-all workhorse Khalil Barrett showed up big again for the Rams with 194 rushing yards and 60 receiving with three touchdowns.

Barrett’s backfield mate Hutchinson rushed for 96 yards and a pair of touchdowns and quarterback Zach Sabdo threw for 191 yards and a touchdown.

Sabdo was helped out keeping drives alive by difficult catches by Christian Capps (a juggling grab) and Tyler Hundley (who out-jumped the defense).

Defensively, the Rams gave up the early score in the second quarter on a long drive by Western Alamance but held the Warriors at seven points until midway through the fourth.

Welton Spottsville snagged a pair of interceptions and Solomon Beligotti grabbed another to help the Rams’ ‘D’ hold the Warriors to a season-low 14, a team that was averaging 46 per game.

“Since this group of seniors were freshmen, we’ve thought they would be good enough to be here,” King said. “We thought when we first saw them as freshmen that they could win it all, now they are going to get that opportunity next Saturday at Duke.”

The Rams will take on a fellow power as Charlotte Catholic defeated Jay M. Robinson High 33-15 in the western final.

Barrett, who almost always stays even keeled and did so in the postgame, said he was determined for Friday not to be his last game as a high-schooler.

“I just didn’t think too much about it being to go to states and went out there focused on playing my game,” he said. “Getting back to states though was on our mind throughout the year when we worked out. We talked about it in the weight room, at practice, but at game time, we stay focused.”

For Western Alamance, the season ends at 14-1, and coach Jeff Snuffer knew there wasn’t much he could say, but he was very impressed with the Warriors’ opponent.

“Being down 14-7 there going into halftime, I felt pretty good, even though they got the ball back,” Snuffer said. “The we got down 21-7, then 27-7 and then 34-7. I was just very impressed with their size and the athleticism of so many of their guys. It was by far the most athletic and fastest team we’ve seen all year and the most dynamic offense we’ve seen all year.”

Not to say the Rams weren’t focused then, but since the Sept. 1st loss to Wallace-Rose Hill, the focus has seemingly been heightened.

King said his team will enjoy this eastern regional title all the way home on the bus ride but then Saturday at 9 a.m. at practice, it’s all about that one last order of business.

The game Saturday at Wallace Wade Stadium at Duke University in Durham will be the Rams’ fifth state title game in the past nine years.

They are 3-1 in those games. 

Havelock 7; 7; 20; 7; 41

Western Alamance 0; 7; 0; 7; 14

First Quarter

H – Welton Spottsville 10 pass from Zach Sabdo (Christian Hoomana kick)

Second Quarter

WA – Keontae Anilus 3 run (Jackson Brooks kick)

H – Khalil Barrett 4 run (Hoomana kick)

Third Quarter

H – Barrett 74 run (Hoomana kick)

H – Barrett 15 run (kick failed)

H – Cameron Hutchinson 15 run (Hoomana kick)

Fourth Quarter

WA – Anilus 2 run (Brooks kick)

H – Hutchinson 18 run (Hoomana kick)

HHS;WAHS

Total Offense  497  245

First Downs 10 16

Rushes-Yards  31-306  35-147

Passing Yards 191 98

Comp-Att-Int 11-14-1 22-38-3

Turnovers 2 3

Fumbles-Lost 1-1 0-0

Penalties-Yards 9-68 7-75

 

Individual Statistics

Passing: Havelock – Zach Sabdo – 11-for-14 for 191 yards (TD, INT). Western Alamance – Christian Daniels – 21-for-37 for 102 yards (3 INT), Jake Christman 1-1 for (-4) yards.

 Rushing: Havelock – Khalil Barrett – 13 carries for 194 yards (3 TD), Cameron Hutchinson 11-96 (2 TD), Kamarro Edmonds 3-14, Solomon Beligotti 2-10, Sabdo 2-(-8). Western Alamance - Daniels – 19-58, Christman 6-49, Keontae Anilus 10-40 (2 TD).

Receiving: Havelock – Barrett – 3 receptions for 60 yards, Welton Spottsville 3-28 (TD), Christian Capps 2-22, Tyler Hundley 1-22, Deshaun Bryant 1-33. Western Alamance – Christman – 7-53, Perry Greeson 3-31, Bradyn Oakley 4-25, D.J. Kirkland 4-15, Jacob Clapp 3-15, Daniels 1-(-4).