Holly Springs’ front five paved the way for 339 rushing yards and set the stage for Holly Springs' wild 48-34 high school football win over Fuquay-Varina.
By Tim Candon
FUQUAY-VARINA -- With one starter back and a new offensive system installed, Holly Springs coach Will Orbin knew his offensive line was going to need some time to find its rhythm this fall.
It might have taken longer than they'd have liked, but It seems the Golden Hawks found their groove on Friday night. The Golden Hawks' front five paved the way for 339 rushing yards and set the stage for Holly Springs' wild 48-34 win over Fuquay-Varina.
"Putting in a new system, it takes a while to get some traction. The transition from split-back veer to shotgun, it's totally different stuff," Orbin said. "The guys have done a great job. ... This is a greaty victory for us."
The Golden Hawks (4-4, 3-3) shredded a Fuquay defense that had allowed 57 total points in their previous four games. Holly Springs posted a season-high 48 points and finished with 435 yards of total offense. Nehemiah Harris had 125 yards and three touchdowns on 27 carries, while Kelvin Wilson ran for 187 yards on 21 carries.
In the second half, the one-two punch of Harris and Wilson was so potent, the Golden Hawks attempted just one pass. On the ground, they averaged 5.6 yards per carry and had just one play go for negative yards.
"No negative plays, win first down, that's something we preach," Orbin said. "We did that tonight. And we knew we had to do that coming in."
The stage was set for a shootout from the start.
On the first play from scrimmage, Fuquay quarterback Tyler Williams raced 69 yards before being pushed out at the 1-yard line. Demarus Williams (104 yards, three TDs) punched it into the end zone on the next play, giving Fuquay a 7-0 lead 41 seconds into the game.
The Golden Hawks faced a 20-7 deficit early in the second quarter before their offense got going. They responded to Quincy Mangum's 58-yard touchdown catch that put the Bengals up 20-7 with a 12-play, 76-yard scoring drive. Harris scored on a 2-yard run to cut the deficit in half.
After the Holly Springs defense held, Wilson raced 60 yards to the end zone on the first play from scrimmage to give the Golden Hawks their first lead of the night, 21-20.
Fuquay (5-4, 4-3) nearly answered with another Mangum TD catch, this one from 57 yards, but the play was wiped out due to holding. The Bengals were forced to punt, and Holly Springs charged right back down the field. Quarterback Brett Hudspeth (4-for-6, 96 yards, 2 TDs) tossed a 5-yard TD pass to Evan Allen with 48 seconds left in the half to give Holly Springs a 28-20 lead.
"Coming out, we wanted to see what they were doing defensively," Orbin said. "They did a few things we didn't expect them to do. Once we saw that and made some adjustments, it just started opening up."
After trading punts on their first two series of the second half, the teams traded touchdowns on their next five possessions.