Extra points were the undoing of PAC-Six 4A heavyweights Durham Hillside and Southern Durham in the first round of the N.C. High School Athletic Association.
Southern missed an extra point that required it to go for a 2-point conversion that failed in a 28-26 loss to Wilmington Hoggard. The Spartans scored with 29 seconds left, but Kendall Hinton (19 of 30 for 266) had his 2-point conversion pass knocked away.
Hillside blocked a potential-tying extra point against Southeast Guilford with 47.5 second left, but was called for roughing the center. Southeast made the second chance and won with a 42-yard field goal after intercepting a Hillside pass.
Northern Durham, the league’s third playoff qualifier, was overwhelmed by Fayetteville E.E. Smith 42-12 and No. 4 finisher East Chapel Hill was eliminated by Scotland 40-5.
NCISAA playoffs: Word of God and North Raleigh Christian will be on the road on Friday in the N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association playoffs.
Word of God travels to Courtland (Va.) Southampton Academy for the eight-man championship while North Raleigh goes to Arden Christ School near Asheville for the Division II semifinals.
Word of God is the two-time defending state champion, but lost to Southampton 40-34 during the regular season. Word of God held on to defeat Hobgood Academy 50-42 last week while Southampton Academy beat Cary Christian 64-36.
North Raleigh Christian defeated Hickory Grove 31-12 and is facing a Christ School team that beat Wake Christian Academy 75-6. Harrells Christian, led by rusher Russell Washington (1,643 yards) plays Davidson Day, with 3,522-yard passer Will Grier, in the other semifinals.
Middle Creek balance: Middle Creek was almost perfectly balanced in its 31-21 first round win over Wilmington Laney.
The Mustangs’ David Salmon completed 17 of 25 passes for 201 yards while Middle Creek rushers ran 40 times for 196 yards.
Salmon has passed for 2,891 yards and Middle Creek has run for 2,083.
Princeton’s second chance: Princeton looked at its 1A playoff opener as a chance to show that it was better than its regular-season loss to North Duplin indicated. Princeton beat North Duplin 28-21 after losing the regular-season meeting 41-7.
North Duplin had run for more than 500 yards in their first meeting.
“It motivated our kids,” said Princeton coach Derrick Minor of that first meeting with North Duplin. “They came out feeling like they didn’t play like the could the first time we played them. It motivated them all week.
“They wanted to prove that that’s not who we are, that we’re a better team.”
North Duplin closed to within 21-14 in the third quarter, but was held on fourth down twice inside the 20-yard line, including once at the 1.
Freshman linebacker Adrian Whack made the touchdown-saving tackle for Princeton on a late fourth down from inside the 5.
“The fourth-and-goal from the 1 was just one of several occasions where our defense stepped up,” Minor said. “We knew if we stopped the run, we were going to win.”