Warriors Slam Mustangs
11/7/2016 4:24 PM

Courtesy of Marietta Daily Journal, originally published November 5, 2016. Greg Oshust, Author KENNESAW — North Cobb finished its regular season with a win over a crosstown rival Kennesaw Mountain on Friday, with a decisive 48-13 victory in the latest installment of the Civil War Classic.

The win, coupled with Hillgrove’s loss to McEachern assured North Cobb (8-2, 4-1 Region 3AAAAAAA) of the region’s No. 2 seed and a home playoff game with Tift County next week.

“We got to play a lot of kids,” North Cobb coach Shane Queen said. “We got off to a strong start, but we got kind of sloppy at the end. Our goal was to host a first-round state playoff game and we accomplished that. We’re excited about hosting a state playoff game next week.”

Kennesaw Mountain finished the season 2-8 overall and 0-5 region play.

North Cobb got a break on the first play of the game when Jamnal Kuku intercepted a pass from Kennesaw Mountain quarterback Jarrett Guest and returned the ball to the Mustangs’ 40-yard line.

The Warriors quickly capitalized as Will Lovett threw a 35-yard touchdown pass to Drew Tejchman on the second play of the series, and Will Horton kicked the extra point for a 7-0 lead with 11:14 remaining in the first quarter.

North Cobb forced Kennesaw Mountain to punt on the ensuing series and scored again when Lovett connected with Deandre Ferguson on a 23-yard scoring pass. Horton’s extra point gave the Warriors a 14-0 lead with 8:01 left in the first quarter.

The Warriors used a series of big runs to set up their next score.

A 22-yard run by Imad Strozier was followed by a 20-yard run by Tejchman, and a 14-yard scamper by Strozier led to a 1-yard touchdown run by Michael Smith before Anthony Rodriguez’s kick increased North Cobb’s advantage to 21-0 with 1:13 left in the first quarter.

North Cobb took advantage of another Kennesaw Mountain interception as Tejchman picked off Guest’s pass and took it to the Mustangs’ 30. Lovett, then, threw a 30-yard scoring pass to Strozier and Rodriguez made the extra point to push the Warrior lead to 28-0 with 11:54 remaining in the first half.

Kennesaw Mountain got on the scoreboard with 7:26 left in the first half when Guest threw a 49-yard touchdown pass to Zach Brooks, helping the Mustangs cut their deficit to 28-6.

It was North Cobb’s defense that provided its next score as Tejchman intercepted a Guest pass and ran it back 40 yards into the end zone, with Rodriguez making the extra point to make it 35-6 with 6:13 left in the first half.

The Warriors finished the first half with another touchdown as Lovett scored from 2 yards out on a quarterback keeper to increase their lead to 41-6 with 31 seconds left.

North Cobb began the second half the same way it ended the first as Strozier scored on a 24-yard run and Rodriguez added the extra point to give the Warriors a 48-6 lead on the first offensive series of the half with 5:55 remaining in the third quarter.

Kennesaw Mountain responded in the next series with two big plays as Keyon Brooks’ 46-yard run set up Guest’s 66-yard touchdown pass to Nevarie Solomon, helping the Mustangs cut the Warriors’ advantage to 48-13 as time ran out in the third quarter.

“North Cobb is a quality team,” Kennesaw Mountain coach Andy Scott said. “Every team in our region is a quality team. We wish them the best of luck in the state playoffs.”

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