Rams force six turnovers, score 42 second-quarter points

Havelock’s Jim Bob Bryant coached the Rams from high in the press box on Friday night. He’s thinking about doing it more often.

Havelock forced six turnovers and scored 42 points in the second quarter of a 74-3 Coastal 3A Conference victory over Swansboro Friday night at Havelock High.

“I just needed to see our offense better and make more adjustments, and I can see everything from an offensive line standpoint and what the defense is doing better from up top,” Bryant said of coaching from the press box. “If I was going to try it, tonight was the night to try it. I like it, so I’ll probably be up there next week, too.”

The Rams (9-1, 4-1) bounced back from Monday’s 28-21 loss to West Craven, a game that ended Havelock’s 35-game conference winning streak.

“Our phrase for today was ‘turn the page,’” Bryant said. “West Craven beat us. They made more plays than us at the end of the game, and they deserved to win. They’re a very good football team, but we’re a very good football team too, so we’re going to turn the page on that, we’re going to move forward, and we’re going to get ready for a very good Jacksonville team.”

After Montrece Gatling scored on Havelock’s third play of the game, Kendall Frazier recovered a fumble on Swansboro’s first play, and Corey Cooper threw 41 yards to Christian Capps for another Havelock touchdown just 2:16 into the game.

Jeffery Harris, Anthony Harris and Deshawn Bryant had interceptions for the Rams, while Christian Capps and Tyiyon Johnson had fumble recoveries, with Johnson’s coming in the end zone with 9:09 left in the second quarter, giving the Rams a 47-0 lead.

“Our defense is playing really good football,” Bryant said. “Our defensive staff does a great job. Anytime you create six turnovers, you’ve got a chance to win.”

The Pirates (3-7, 0-5) got on the board when quarterback Thomas Reynolds completed two big pass plays, and combined with a roughing penalty on the Rams, moved the ball to the Havelock 11. Cole Gleason’s 28-yard field goal with 6:08 in the second quarter accounted for Swansboro’s lone points for the game.

“You’ve got to play perfect football against them, and if you don’t, you’re going to pay the price, and we paid a price,” Swansboro coach Tim Laspada said.

Bryant said the Rams focused on the running game against Swansboro, getting three rushing touchdowns from Justin Hoover, two each from Gatling and Solomon Beligotti and one from Cooper.

“I’m real happy with our running back play,” Bryant said. “Finding Justin Hoover, that gives us another gear at the running back spot. He didn’t start playing running back until Tuesday. He’s been playing wide receiver for three years. I thought our offensive line did well, and our running backs played well.”

Havelock is scheduled to host Jacksonville for senior night at 7 p.m. Friday at Havelock High.

Scoring Summary

Swansboro 0 3 0 0 -3

Havelock 26 42 6 0 -74

First Quarter

H – Montrece Gatling, 8-yard run, Christian Hoomana kick, 11:00

H – Christian Capps, 41-yard pass from Corey Cooper, kick failed, 9:44

H – Solomon Beligotti, 3-yard run, Hoomana kick, 5:49

H – Justin Hoover, 13-yard run, kick blocked, 2:19

Second Quarter

H – Gatling, 12-yard run, Hoomana kick, 11:55

H – Beligotti, 4-yard run, Hoomana kick, 9:32

H – Tyiyon Johnson, fumble recovery in end zone, Hoomana kick, 9:09

S – Cole Gleason, 28-yard field goal, 6:08

H – Quinzel Lockhart, 57-yard pass from Cooper, Hoomana kick, 4:26

H – Cooper, 8-yard run, Hoomana kick, 2:25

H – Hoover, 15-yard run, Hoomana kick, 1:57

Third Quarter

H – Hoover, 36-yard run, run failed, 7:38