RALEIGH — Enloe coach Ron Clark was not happy at halftime of Thursdays game against Heritage, despite the fact that his team was one half away from its first win of the season.
We had a stern conversation at halftime because the errors mentally were killing us, he said. We should have been up a little bit more.
His players took his words to heart, using three second-half touchdowns to defeat Heritage 26-7 and come up with the teams first win.
After the game, Clark was more upbeat about his teams performance than during his halftime speech.
Defensively, this is the best game weve had all year, he said. John Michael Stewart did what hes been doing offensively and we were able to get the ball to Alterik Hurst who had an outstanding game.
Stewart finished 12 for 19 passing, throwing for 225 yards and two touchdowns. Hurst ran for 117 yards on 17 carries, putting the game away for good with a seven-yard run with less than four minutes remaining in the third quarter.
Both teams struggled with penalties and turnovers throughout the game. There was a stretch early in the fourth quarter where the teams combined for three consecutive turnovers. Heritage, however, was unable to take advantage of its opponents miscues.
Despite the missed opportunities, Heritage was within a touchdown until Charlie Twitties two yard run gave Enloe a 19-7 lead with just under six minutes left in the forth quarter.
Heritage coach Jason McGeorge said he was not happy with the way his team finished the game.
Most of the game we were in it. We were lucky to be in it the way we were playing. We pride ourselves on finishing, and we didnt finish, and Im very disappointed.
With multiple injuries to backfield contributors, Heritage was forced to pass the ball for most of the game. Freshman quarterback Blake Walters threw for a touchdown, but he also completed two passes to Enloe defenders. Walters finished 8 for 20, throwing for 129 yards.
The win gave Enloe a 1-6 record more than halfway through the season.
Obviously our goal is to get in the playoffs and weve still got an opportunity, Clark said. weve just got to make the most of it.