After taking close victories in their first two games of the season, Middle Creek has turned on the jets ever since, trouncing West Johnston 56-0 at home Friday night after thrashing rival Garner the preceding week.
A near perfect offensive balance between passing and rushing kept the Wildcat defense guessing in the first half, allowing the Mustangs to rack up 42 points before the halftime break.
“That’s a great compliment to our offensive line, they allow us to do so many things,” Middle Creek coach Randy Ragland said. “They’re athletic enough to get out and block for screens, they’re physical enough to get inside and do the run block stuff we need and they protect their quarterback.”
In only one half of work, quarterback Dominique Shoffner was extremely efficient, going 8 for 15 for 133 yards and four touchdowns and an interception. Shoffner spread the love equally, hitting six different receivers in the first half, finding Shammon Hicks, Ashton Mitchell and Dareke Young (twice) for receiving scores.
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“When you have speed from guys like Hicks and Spencer, it makes it easy for me,” Shoffner said. “I have great connections with all my receivers, we work hard in practice, which allows us to execute on Friday nights.”
The Middle Creek offense didn’t take long to get into a rhythm, going 65 yards in only 41 seconds to open the game as Shoffner capped off the drive with a 31 yard pass to Young to get the highlight reel rolling.
“Three plays into the first quarter on that first drive, we set the tone for the game,” Ragland said.
From there, the touchdowns kept rolling in as the Mustangs scored 21 points in both the first and second quarter.
When Shoffner came out in the second half, the run game stole the show as the Mustangs went with their plethora of backfield talent in the second half. No back toted the ball more than five times, but Middle Creek still finished with 250 yards rushing as a team. Darian Fogg, DeAndre Jones, and Jordan Clater each punched in scores of at least 23 yards each.
After jumping out to a 14-0 lead, Johnathan Spencer solidified Middle Creek’s dominance by weaving through the West Johnston offense on a 47 yard interception return to put the Mustangs up 21-0.
“After the snap I back pedaled 10 yards, then I broke on the ball full sprint and caught the ball at its highest point,” Spencer said. “I hit the sideline, saw one defender, cut into the middle of the field and switched gears full speed into the end zone.”
They said it
“Every week I’m shocked by what we do offensively,” Ragland said. “Last week we had 12 different guys catch balls and I don’t know one other high school team that does that.”
3 who mattered
Dominique Shoffner, Middle Creek: Shoffner was efficient as a passer, but also gave the Mustangs a boost in the run game, carrying the ball four times for 35 yards.
Offensive line, Middle Creek: It’s tough to single out one player, as the Mustang offensive line unit was the crucial centerpiece to Middle Creek’s offensive fireworks.
Jordan Clater, Middle Creek: Just when you thought the offense was done, Clater broke tackles from nearly every member of the West Johnston defense en route to a 71 yard rushing score on his sole carry of the night.
By the numbers
7, 4: By the time Shoffner had completed seven passes, he already had four touchdowns to his name.
12.5: Yards per carry Middle Creek averaged as a team. Seven different ballcarriers contributed to the team’s 20 attempts and 250 yard effort.
18 minutes, 42 seconds: How long it took until West Johnston gave the ball to someone not named Andre Wilson or Tony Mack when Joseph Lama rumbled for a six yard gain late in the second quarter.