The last time a Jimmy Williams football team had opened with a 6-0 start to a season was in 2004, amid his 15-year tenure as head coach at East Wake.
That was until Friday, anyway, when Tony Mack scored six first-half touchdowns to lead Williams’ West Johnston Wildcats to a 43-7 victory, spoiling homecoming for the Warriors.
"Obviously, I know a lot about the area and was here a long time," Williams said. "Anytime you can beat East Wake it’s a great win because you’ve beat a program; you haven’t beat a team. I’m just humbled to have been a part of (the East Wake program), and just glad we could come in here tonight and have a great performance."
Mack averaged a staggering 16.2 yard per carry on a 227-yard night for the senior.
"Tony Mack is a college tailback, he’s just not got that height all the guys are looking for," Williams said. "But he’s a special athlete, he’s hard to deal with, and I’m blessed to have him."
Mack started his running clinic with two touchdowns (47 and 2 yards) in the first quarter.
He added four more (4, 8, 23 and 70 yards) in the second to give West Johnston (6-0, 3-0 Greater Neuse River 4A) its final score by halftime. Noah Liles ran in a 2-point conversion after Mack’s 23-yarder with 4:50 left in the opening half.
Mack got to rest the entire second half, giving Joseph Lama most of the remaining ground work against the Warriors (2-5, 0-3).
"He’d have a whole lot more stats, but he usually comes out at halftime, and he did today," Williams said of Mack.
THEY SAID IT
West Johnston is trying not to look too far into the future, but Williams said it’s hard to ignore upcoming games against fellow GNRC powers Clayton (away, Oct. 21) and Garner (home, Oct. 28).
"The only way to get to 7-0 is to win next week and just be 1-0 next week," Williams said. "But obviously we’re anticipating hopefully being able to play for the conference championship and Clayton is probably the best team we’re going to have to play before that, so we’ve got a lot of work to do.
"We certainly can get better. Momentum is definitely in our favor and all the kids are practicing and taking one day at a time. Hopefully we’ll be where we want to be at the end of the year."
THREE TO KNOW
Tony Mack, West Johnston: His 14-carry, 227-yard and six-score night is worthy of reiterating.
Andre Wilson, West Johnston: The senior quarterback offered the Wildcats a complementary run threat. Wilson finished with six carries for 65 yards, and was 8-for-11 for 106 yard passing.
Bishop Hill, East Wake: Hill, a junior, and Jazon Scarboro, a sophomore, split time filling for starting Warriors QB Tyshawn Milam, who was injured a week earlier at Garner. Hill got off to a slow start but went 5-for-5 for 81 yards in the second half, including a 3-yard TD pass to Justin Harrington in the game’s final minute.
BY THE NUMBERS
2: The number of plays it took West Johnston to score on its opening drive, much thanks to Mack’s breakaway, 47-yard TD run down the right side.
60: The number of rushing yards for East Wake’s senior RB Mikekale Engles.
69: East Wake’s total team rushing yards.
328: West Johnston’s total team rushing yards.