DURHAM — Running back Donte’ Thomas-Williams rushed for 209 of Durham Hillside’s 261 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Hornets to a 35-21 victory over Durham Riverside in PAC-6 action Friday night.
The win moved Hillside into sole possession of first place and ended the Pirates’ four-game winning streak. PAC-6 rushing leader Joel Evans, who was averaging more than 180 yards per game, was held to 122 yards.
“Our focus was on him all week. We knew what he was capable of,” Hillside coach Antonio King said. “We wanted to contain him, but you can only do so much.”
Evans had help in the backfield. Teammate Jonathan Rhew ran for 115 yards and one touchdown, but Riverside couldn’t stop Thomas-Williams and the Hornets when it counted.
Leading 14-7 at halftime, Hillside extended its lead 21-7 on Thomas-Williams’ second touchdown midway the third quarter.
But the Pirates responded with an 80-yard drive that Rhew finished from the 4 to pull to within seven points.
The Hornets countered with their own 80-yard drive, which ended when Thomas-Williams scored his second straight TD with 9:39 left. Hillside made it a three-score lead on quarterback Nas Forte-Ferguson’s 73-yard strike to Ray Green.
Riverside quarterback Diante Strothers hit Deon Yarborough for 13 yards with 2:47 remaining for the final score.
“We just made too many mistakes down the end,” Riverside coach David Hackney said. “We missed some tackles and we didn’t get the stops. But I’m proud of our guys. These were two pretty good teams.”
The Hornets scored on their first two possessions to take a 14-0 lead.
Hillside drove seven plays on 65 yards to go up 7-0 when Forte-Ferguson hit Trevion Thompson from 21 yards out.
After the Pirates missed a 37-yard field goal attempt, the Hornets put together another long drive, 80 yards, that culminated in Thomas-Williams’ 38-yard score.
But Riverside didn’t fold. The Pirates put together their best drive of the half – 14 plays, 80 yards – that ended when Strothers flipped the ball to Darryl Smith in the end zone on 4th-and-1.
Riverside had to chance to draw closer, but Micah Goodwin’s 46-yard field goal attempt was blocked just as the half ended.