Sunday, October 26, 2014

HCA Football Falls to South Lake Christian

HUNTERSVILLE, NC - The Harrells Christian Academy Football team lost to the South Lake Christian Eagles 49-19 on Friday night. The Crusaders struggled on offense due to the absence of their leading rusher Marcus Scarborough who was not able to play due to being ejected from the Crusaders previous game against Q Foundation. The Crusaders second leading rusher, Joseph Phaneuf was out of the game due to a shoulder injury.

The Crusaders never found any rhythm on offense and surrendered multiple first half scores. The Eagles' rushing attack was lead by junior running back Robert Washington who totaled 262 yards on 25 carries and tallied four total scores. Washington broke a career rushing landmark against the Crusaders by surpassing 5,000 yards in just three years. The junior running back already has over 30 offers to play Division 1 football including offers from Notre Dame, Ole Miss, and Stanford.

The Crusaders struggled all night to find a way to stop Robert Washington,
South Lake's all time leading rusher
The Crusaders found the end zone one time in the closing stages of the first half on a 33 yard touchdown connection between senior quarterback OH Rouse and Davonta Best. The Crusaders headed into the half trailing by a sizable 35-7 deficit.

The Crusader came out in the second half with a lot of heart and held the Eagles to just two scoring drives. The Crusaders matched the Eagles scoring attack in the second half with two touchdowns of their own. The Eagles outscored the Crusaders by a much smaller amount in the second half by only a 14-12 spread. The Eagles did not let up through the second half by playing their starters the entire game. The Crusaders fell short at the end of game losing by a margin of 49-19.

The Crusader coaches emphasized to their players after the game how proud they were of their boys and the way they never gave up and kept fighting. HCA assistant coach Clayton Hall stated after the game," I would love to play this team again in three or four weeks come playoff time with our entire team, healthy and ready to go."

The Crusader look to claim a conference title in their next game against Ravenscroft with the help of the Crusader's leading rusher Marcus Scarborough who did not play in Harrells game against South Lake

The Crusaders play for a conference championship next week as they travel to Ravenscroft in Raleigh. HCA will be a revamped team with their leading rusher and other key players back for the conference championship game. The team hopes to clinch the conference title and head into the playoffs with some momentum in the search for a State Championship Title.

Monday, October 20, 2014

HCA Football Falls to Q Foundation

The Harrells Christian Academy football team suffered their third loss of the season Friday night against the Q Foundation 38-12. The Crusaders could not seem to find any momentum throughout the entire game and failed to find the end zone after the early stages of the second quarter.

HCA received the ball to start the game and quickly found the end zone on a three yard touchdown run by junior tailback Marcus Scarborough. The Crusaders tried to keep the momentum in their favor by attempting an onside kick to quickly retain possession. The onside kick was perfectly placed however a Falcon player jumped up and grabbed the ball and returned the kick for a touchdown to give Q Foundation a 8-6 lead.

The Crusaders came back with a counter attack in the beginning of the second quarter with a one yard quarterback sneak by OH Rouse for a touchdown. The Crusaders regained a 12-8 lead with 10:33 left in the second quarter. The Crusaders would not find the end zone again for the remainder of the game.

The Falcons once again returned a short kickoff ,by the Crusaders, back for a touchdown to put themselves on top with a 16-12 lead. The two teams headed into halftime in a tightly contested game with the Falcons leading 16-12.

Q Foundation received the kickoff to start the second half and quickly found the end zone on a 40 yard run to extend the Falcon lead to 22-12. After a stop by the Falcon defense, Q Foundation was knocking on the door of the end zone when Don Banks, sophomore safety for the Crusaders, came up with an interception on the 1 yard line to give the Crusaders the ball back. The Crusaders were then forced to punt which set up an 8 yard touchdown reception to extend the Falcon's lead to 30-12 in the early stages of the fourth quarter.

After the two teams traded a pair of interceptions the Falcons scored one final time on a 31 yard touchdown run to seal the 38-12 win over the Crusaders. Harrells Christian's loss to the Falcons dropped their record to 5-3 on the season.

The Crusaders will be without leading rusher Marcus Scarborough, starting fullback Joseph Phaneuf,
and tight end Ethan Hall in their upcoming matchup against South Lake Christian
The Crusaders look to bounce back as they take on South Lake Christian. The matchup between the Crusaders and the Eagles serves as a pivotal game for playoff seeding implications. HCA will be without their leading rusher, Marcus Scarborough, in their matchup with the Eagles after he was ejected from Friday night's game against Q Foundation.

Monday, October 13, 2014

HCA Football Finds Offensive Groove Against North Raleigh

The Harrells Christian Academy football team bounced back from last week's loss at Wake Christian with a convincing 42-14 victory over North Raleigh Christian Academy on Homecoming Night.

The Crusaders got back on track by getting back to the basics of Crusader football: blocking and running through the holes the linemen create. HCA stepped up on the defensive side of the ball by only allowing one offensive touchdown by the Knights.

The Crusaders started out the game with the ball but were soon halted by the North Raleigh defense. The HCA defense came up big with a fumble recovery by Nathan Casteen to give the Crusaders the ball back on their own 47 yard line. HCA reached deep into their playbook to convert on a 40 yard touchdown reception from OH Rouse to Davonta Best to give the Crusaders an early 7-0 lead.

The Crusader defense came up with a stop on fourth down to set up a 9 yard touchdown run by Davonta Best for his second score of the game.

The Knights answered with a 87 yard kickoff return for a touchdown to tighten the Crusader lead to 14-7. Marcus Scarborough answered right back for the Crusaders with a 88 yard kickoff return for a touchdown ,of his own, to extend the HCA lead to 21-7.

Marcus Scarborough found the end zone again for the Crusaders from 1 yard out to lengthen the lead to 28-7. Cole Hardison then came up with a huge interception for the Crusaders just as the Knights began to gain some offensive momentum. HCA quickly took advantage of the turnover on a 35 yard touchdown run by Marcus Scarborough for his third score of the game.

The Crusader defense came up with another stop on fourth down to set up a 4 yard touchdown run by Quinton Faison to push the lead to 42-7 heading into the half.

North Raleigh came out firing in the second half by scoring on their first drive on a 35 yard touchdown pass to shorten the Crusader lead to 42-14.

Neither team found the end zone in the latter stages of the game allowing HCA to cruise to a 42-14 victory over North Raleigh to improve their record to 5-2 (1-1) on the season.
OH Rouse led the Crusaders on defense with 7 total
tackles and one sack.

Marcus Scarborough finished the game with 223 all purpose yards. Scarborough rushed for 116 yards on 13 carries and 2 touchdowns. The junior totaled 107 total return yards and 1 touchdown to help propel the Crusaders to victory.

The Crusaders clinched a playoff spot with Friday's win over the Knights and look to strengthen their résumé in their next matchup at home against Q Foundation on Friday, October 17 for Senior Night.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

HCA Football Falls to Wake Christian in Conference Opener

The Harrells Christian Academy Football team lost to Wake Christian Academy 52-48 in an offensive shootout.

Harrells received the ball to start to the game. The Bulldogs came up with a huge fourth down stop to give them the ball on the Wake 11 yard line. The Crusader defense answered right back by forcing a fumble that was recovered by senior defensive lineman Jordan Musslewhite who ran the ball in for a touchdown to give HCA an early 6-0 lead.

The Bulldogs answered back with a score of their own on a 12 yard touchdown run after a long drive down the field.

HCA running back Marcus Scarborough broke away for a 57 yard touchdown to put the Crusaders back on top 12-6 in the waining stages of the first quarter.

The two teams continued to trade scoring drives and headed to halftime in a tightly contested game. The Bulldogs lead 22-20 heading into the half.

Wake started out quickly in the second half with a 37 yard touchdown run.

The Crusader offense threw a counter punch with a 64 yard touchdown run by senior fullback Joseph Phaneuf.

The Crusader defense forced the Bulldogs to turn the ball over on downs which set up a 1 yard quarterback keeper by OH Rouse for a touchdown to give HCA the 34-30 lead in the third quarter.

The Crusaders came up with another stop but fumbled the ball on the ensuing drive which allowed the Bulldogs to score on a 29 yard touchdown pass. The Bulldogs headed into the fourth quarter with a 38-34 lead.

The Bulldogs stopped the high powered Crusader offense on fourth down which set up yet another long touchdown pass, this time from 45 yards out, to extend the lead to 44-34 with 8:18 left to play.

The Crusaders came out on their next drive and surprised everyone on a 61 yard touchdown reception by Davonta Best to tighten the deficit to 44-42 with 8:04 left to play in the game.

The Crusader defense came up with a big fumble that set up a 6 yard touchdown run by Marcus Scarborough to give HCA their first lead, 48-44, since the second quarter.

Wake marched down the field draining the clock down to under a minute to play. The Bulldogs were faced with a 4th down on the HCA 2 yard line. The Bulldog quarterback powered his way into the end zone to give Wake the 52-48 lead with 24 seconds left in the game.

The Crusaders could not muster out on final score to push them to victory. Wake handed the Crusaders their second loss of the season with a 52-48 victory.

The Crusaders hope to bounce back and contend for the conference and state championship title.

HCA can clinch a playoff spot with a victory in their upcoming homecoming game against North Raleigh Christian Academy.

Andrew Miller
Sports Writer