North Forsyth shuts out Etowah, 28-0

 

The North Forsyth Raiders remain undefeated and improve to 4-0 as they traveled to Etowah High School on Friday, Sept. 25. The Raider defense showed up yet again, shutting out the Etowah Eagles, winning 28-0. 

Right from the beginning, North’s defense showed and proved their expectations as #13, cornerback Jamel Lewis, picked off the quarterback’s pass and ran it back untouched for 25 yards, scoring the first points of the game. 

The Raider defense continued to abide by the “bend, don’t break” method as they allowed nearly 200 yards on the night. Junior Tristan Graham, #26 and senior Aaron Griffen, #17, contributed to the success of this method, ending Etowah’s drives on their fourth-down attempts to keep the Raider lead. 

Coach Bryant had good things to say about his defensive front, saying, “The success of the defense had nothing to do with us coaches, we just have some great kids, and some special senior leadership with Max Bryant and Dylan Lurie.” 

Brady Meitz and the offense had success through the air as Meitz connected with #8, senior wide receiver, Tucker Hartsfield for multiple 30-yard receptions. The Raiders took a 14-0 lead as Patrick Corrigan rumbled into the endzone. Meitz continued to torch the Etowah defense as he threw a strike for 24 yards to #3, junior wide receiver Garrett Achilles, for a touchdown as the Raiders widened their lead to 21-0.

As the half came to a close, Etowah lined up for a field goal to put up their first points of the game. However, the Eagles were deprived of the chance as #72, senior Stiegel Brock, got his hands in the air at the right time and blocked the field goal, bringing an end to the first half.

The Raider offense struggled in the second half; however, the special teams and defense kept their Raider’s lead secure. The Eagles attempted to punt, but Garrett Achilles would block it.  #10 junior Drew Aucoin recovered the punt in the endzone for the second non-offensive score that extended the Raider lead to 28-0.

The defense and special teams stole the spotlight for the Raiders. “I am proud of the way the defensive backs played,” Coach Braswell said, “We had some pass breakups and we were flying around the football and forced some turnovers. Our maturity in the back end is something I am extremely proud of.”

Peyton Wagner, #1, had an interception late in the game to seal the deal for the Raiders. Wagner contributes his ability to find the football to Coach Braswell, who coaches the defensive backs. Peyton Wagner says, “He does the drills that Braswell has them do every day” and Wagner says that if he could improve on his own game he would improve his “tackling and a more aggressive approach.”

The Raider’s defense was solid all night, making big plays when they had to in order to keep the goose egg on the scoreboard for the Eagles. After the game, Head Coach Robert Craft said, “Our goal tonight was to be 4-0, but the region schedule starts now and it is the most important part of our schedule.” 

When asked how the team needs to improve for next week against Denmark, Craft explained, “Although tonight was the best game we played on special teams, we just need to continue to limit some penalties and that will hurt us down the road.”