By Lance Hickey
NBHS– North Buncombe continued its surge atop the area’s standings, collecting a 40-14 victory over T.C. Roberson Thursday evening. The team’s score was lead by Quarterback Caden Higgins who had four touchdowns during the game.
In preparation for Hurricane Florence, many high school football games in the area were moved to Thursday, including North Buncombe’s matchup versus T.C. Robertson. The time change had little effect on the BlackHawks’ hot start to the season.
North Buncombe received the opening possession of the game but would be forced into a turnover-on-downs. T.C. Roberson punted on their first possession, handing the BlackHawks the ball back on the Rams 28-yardline. North Buncombe took immediate advantage, capitalizing on a Higgins one-yard touchdown run with 2:31 remaining in the first quarter. T.C. Roberson blocked the extra point, leaving the score at 6-0.
Following a turnover-on-downs by the Rams, the BlackHawks responded again on another Higgins touchdown run, this time from 5-yards out. The BlackHawks took a 13-0 lead with 9 minutes remaining in the second quarter, but they were just getting started.
It became Skylar Jutras’ turn to take over the quarter. Following an Eric Rice fumble recovery, the BlackHawks received the ball again as Jutras scored on a 19-yard run on North Buncombe’s next possession. The BlackHawks took a 20-0 lead.
The Rams committed their third turnover of the game on an interception in the end-zone by Adrian Boggs, again preventing a T.C. Robertson score. North Buncombe finished with a Jutras 64-yard touchdown run, on a four-play, 80-yard scoring drive. The BlackHawks headed into the half with a 27-0 halftime lead.
T.C. Roberson began the second half hot, scoring on a 38-yard touchdown pass from Ty Gossett to Jordan Proctor-Bates, bringing the Rams within 20-points at 27-7. That would be the closest the Rams would get.
After empty possessions by both squads, North Buncombe scored again on a 3-yard touchdown run by Higgins just before the end of the third period. The BlackHawks lead 33-7 after three quarters.
Following another Ram turnover, the BlackHawks put their final touches on the game as Higgins scored on a 5-yard scamper with 9 minutes remaining in the game. Both Higgins, 108 rushing yards and four touchdowns, and Jutras, 206 rushing yards and two touchdowns, had stellar performances rushing the ball, while being catapulted by North Buncombe’s stingy defense.
North Buncombe (4-1) (2-0) would go on to win 40-14. It proved to be another dominating performance on both sides of the ball for North Buncombe. The BlackHawks face new challenges soon with an away matchup at Erwin and a home game versus Enka.