Falcons don’t waste any time making it a long Knight

FLYING FALCON:  Deceldrion Gay takes off on an 81-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to start Thursday’s game. (Photo by JOHN JAMES MARSHALL, Journal Sports)

By JOHN JAMES MARSHALL, Journal Sports

When you get an 81-yard kickoff return for a touchdown on the opening play of the game, you get the feeling it’s going to be your night.

When you score on the first four possessions of the game while not allowing a first down on defense, you know it’s going to be your night.

It was Northwood’s night.

The Falcons had it all working Thursday night in a 48-0 District 1-4A win over Woodlawn at Jerry Burton Stadium.

The fast start was just what head coach Austin Brown wanted to see because it was an important final step as the Falcons set their sights on their biggest game of the year – a date with undefeated North DeSoto in the final game of the regular season.

“Next week is going to be a lot of excitement and a lot of pressure, so we tried to put a lot of pressure on our guys this week and demand a lot,” Brown said. “They did a lot better than the week before. But we still have a lot of improvement to do before next week.”

Sophomore Deceldrion Gay got the Senior Night party started with a blazing return of the opening kick to set the tone for the night.

“We’ve been waiting for him to do something like that for a while,” Brown said. “He tore it up all year on JV this fall. He’s had to go three or four weeks of not getting any playing time at all. I’m happy for him.”

The Falcons followed that with a formula that’s worked all season long – the running of Quintavion White and the passing of Mason Welch.

Welch had two touchdown passes to Desmond Harris sandwiched around a 36-yard, second- and third-effort scoring run by White to make it 28-0 with 10:55 to go before halftime.

Welch threw another touchdown pass – a 15-yarder to Elijah Crawford – late in the second quarter to give Northwood a 35-0 lead.

The Falcons got a 19-yard touchdown run from White and a 1-yard quarterback sneak from Hutson Hearron to finish the scoring in the second half.

Welch was an efficient 7-of-12 for 103 yards with three touchdowns as he moved into the No. 2 spot in school history for career yardage.

“I liked our mentality of not being satisfied tonight with the score or individual results,” Brown said. “It was about effort and execution no matter what happened.”

It was a tough night all the way around for Woodlawn, whose first 28 plays were all run in the Knights’ own territory.

The only bright spot for the Knights came on a 44-yard pass from Isiaih Kennedy to Brandon Henderson late in the game for an apparent touchdown. But it was called back for an illegal block.

Winners of five straight, the Falcons are now 7-2 overall and 5-1 in the district. Woodlawn falls to 3-6 and 2-4 in the district. The Knights will finish the season at home against Minden. 

Contact JJ at johnjamesmarshall@yahoo.com

Northwood 48, Woodlawn 0 

 Score by quarters

Woodlawn | 0 | 0 | 0 | 0 | – 0

Northwood | 21 | 14 | 6 | 7 | – 48 

Scoring summary

N – Deceldrion Gay 81 kickoff return (Willie Martinez kick)

N – Desmond Harris 11 pass from Mason Welch (Martinez kick)

N – Quintavion White 36 run (Martinez kick)

N – Harris 31 pass from Welch (Martinez kick)

N – Elijah Crawfod 15 pass from Welch (Martinez kick)

N – White 19 run (kick failed)

N – Hutson Hearron 1 run (Lex Williams kick)

Individual leaders

Rushing 

Northwood (23-163) – Quintavion White 6-88, Deceldrion Gay 3-25, Fabien Sanders 5-23, Hutson Hearron 4-13, Marc Denison 1-7, Tomarcus Keith 2-7, Justin Thomas 1-5, Mason Welch 1-minus-1, Mar’Jayvious Moss 1-minus-4.

Woodlawn (25-57) – Quintin Wilson 7-24, De’Shawnee Snow 1-19, Isaiah Kennedy 9-10, Brandon Henderson 3-3, Josh Dotson 1-1, Joshua Kennon 2-minus-2.

Passing

Northwood (8-14-0, 123 yards) – Welch 7-12-0,  103 yards, Hearron 1-2-0, 20 yards.

Woodlawn (10-16-1, 78 yards) – Kennedy 10-16-1, 78 yards.

Receiving 

Northwood – Desmond Harris 3-62, Elijah Crawford 2-55, Denison 2-8, Moss 1-minus-2.

Woodlawn – Henderson 6-62, D.J. Bates 2-7, Dotson 1-6, Jaiyon Allen 1-3.