Years from now the current players at Apex High and Apex Friendship will be able to look back and say that they competed in the first ever varsity football game between the crosstown schools and that it was electric.
The Cougars took home a 14-6 win and the Peak City Backyard Brawl trophy, emerging victorious in a defensive battle that came down to the final minute against the first-year-varsity Patriots.
Down 7-0 late in the fourth quarter Friendship wide receiver Jaden Roundtree caught a 50-yard bomb from Dylan Elkins with 1 minute, 31 seconds left in the game to trim the Cougars lead to 7-6. Friendship decided to go for the two-point conversion but the pass fell just short of the intended receiver in the end zone after it appeared to be tipped by a Cougar defender.
“We work on that play a lot, and we said let’s go and see if we can get this game,” said Roundtree, who had three receptions for 75 yards.
Never miss a local story.
The Cougars (2-5, 2-2 Southwest Wake 4A), and were led by Ulises Santos, who rushed for 156 yards. Quentin Hunter-Colvin and Ethan Foote scored the Cougar touchdowns.
Friendship (1-5, 0-4) is still looking for its first SWAC victory, but was encouraged with how it began what should be a spirited crosstown rivalry for years to come.
THEY SAID IT
“We grew up tonight,” said Friendship head coach Adam Sanders. “This one hurts, but I love where this program is going. These are special young men who will accomplish more on this field and in life. This community has gotten behind us all the way.”
THREE WHO MATTERED
Quentin Hunter-Colvin, Apex: Scored the first touchdown between these two teams on a 23-yard run.
Defensive line, Friendship: Chris Ingram, Luke Cerasi and Justin Reed each recorded two sacks.
Duke Fruehauf, Apex: Although he did not put up big numbers, the junior quarterback managed the game and did not make the critical errors against a fired-up Patriots defense.
BY THE NUMBERS
8: the number of sacks the Patriots notched
42: the number of rushing yards the Cougars held the Patriots to on the night.