Cleveland grabbed the Two Rivers 3A Conference’s conference champion state football playoff spot and no worse than a share of the league championship with a 49-13 road victory over Western Harnett.
Rams’ quarterback Caiden Norman had a near perfect night. He completed 27 of 31 attempts on the night for 433 yards with four touchdowns and no interceptions. Norman also ran for two TDs in the victory.
Jacob Scott was the recipient of many of those Norman passes, rolling up 250 yards receiving on 10 catches, three of those going for scores. Jake Mason had five catches for 97 yards and the other TD.
The Rams (7-3 overall, 4-0 conference) face Corinth Holders in their regular-season finale. A win there would give Cleveland the outright conference title.
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Wake Christian 34, Village Christian 13: Wake Christian finished its regular season with a 34-13 romp over Fayetteville Village Christian to complete a perfect 9-0 regular season. The Bulldogs were named the No. 1 seed in the N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association Division III playoffs and will host Fayetteville Christian (4-6) on Friday, Nov. 4 at 7 p.m.
Rolesville 13, Clayton 7: Rolesville extended Clayton’s losing streak to three games with a home decision over the Comets. Clayton stands 6-4 overall and 3-3 in the Greater Neuse River 4A Conference entering the final week of the season.
A win over Southeast Raleigh this week would go a long way in helping cement the Comets’ playoff hopes.
North Johnston 34, SouthWest Edgecombe 20: The Panthers held the Cougars scoreless in the second half to notch their second straight Eastern Plains 2A Conference victory. The Panthers had two-TD nights from both Trey Whitley and Jonathan Gonzalez in the victory. Whitley ran for 116 yards on just 12 carries.
Quarterback Treshaun McPhatter and received Jahvante Dublin hooked up on a 96-yard touchdown pass as well for the Panthers. McPhatter was 9-of-17 for 207 yards passing on the night.
The Panthers (6-3 overall, 2-1 conference) host league-leading Washington (3-6, 3-0) this week.
Lakewood 48, Princeton 14: The Leopards jumped out to a three-touchdown lead and scored 28 points in the final quarter to put away the Bulldogs on Friday night.
The Leopards’ win creates a three-way tie for first place with Princeton (4-5 overall), North Duplin (5-4) and Lakewood (6-3) all at 3-1 in the conference.
Princeton has games left against Rosewood and Spring Creek.
Earl Gibson ran for 130 yards and a TD on 25 carries for Princeton in the loss; Matthew Stallworth added 77 yards and a TD as well.
Southeast Raleigh 49, Harnett Central 12: The Bulldogs notched their fourth straight victory to move to 4-2 in the Greater Neuse River 4A Conference, lining up a direct route to a third place finish outright in the conference.
The Bulldogs (7-3 overall) meet Clayton on Friday and get that No. 3 spot with a win. A loss could create a three-way tie with Clayton and Rolesville for third place.
Triton 59, Smithfield-Selma 7: Triton held the Spartans to 52 yards of offense in a Two Rivers 3A Conference victory. The Hawks ran for 397 yards in the win and led 31-0 at the half.
Antonio McDaniel scored the lone Spartan (0-10 overall, 0-4 conference) on a 6-yard run in the fourth quarter.
Other Area Sports
Dixon in state’s top 8: Cleveland’s Victoria Dixon finished in the top eight in the state’s 3A girls tennis ranks. Dixon bowed out of the N.C. High School Athletic Association 3A Singles Championships with a quarterfinal round loss to Kate Earnhardt of Concord on Friday. Earnhardt downed Dixon, 6-1, 6-1, and went onto win the state championship on Saturday.
Dixon took a 6-0, 6-0 win over Hannah Farmer of Enka in the opening round of play on Friday.
Pair of Bulldogs qualify for states: Princeton’s Austin Sullivan and Brent Hurst both earned individual state championship bids from the NCHSAA 1A Mideast Regional at WakeMed Park in Cary on Saturday.
Sullivan finished fourth in the meet at 17 minutes, 11.96 seconds. Hurst was 14th in 18:01.6.
The Bulldogs finished eighth as a team in the regional on a day when every Princeton runner set a personal best time in the 5K event. The top four teams in each regional and the top four individual finishers not on those teams advance to the Nov. 5 state championships.
Raleigh Charter’s boys and Franklin Academy’s girls took the regional team titles.