Running back Jacob Newman and the South Meck defense were too much for Myers Park

·4 min read

South Mecklenburg got one of its biggest wins in 13 years Friday, going to Myers Park and ruining the Mustangs’ homecoming.

The Sabres won 3-0 behind a stellar rushing performance from senior Jacob Newman, who played at Myers Park last season, and a stellar performance from their defense, which denied the Mustangs points on multiple trips into scoring position.

Myers Park was shutout for the first time in 64 games. The Mustangs lost 53-0 to Butler in October 2016.

The Sabres (7-2, 3-1 SoMECK) also ended the Mustangs’ four-game win streak and moved into a tie for first place in the SoMECK conference. South Meck, which reached the N.C. 4A state semifinal 13 years ago, had fallen on tough times since, recently suffering through a 14-game losing streak.

But third-year coach Joe Evans and his team can clinch the outright conference championship with a win at Harding next week. The Sabres are tied for first place heading into the final regular-season game with Myers Park (6-3, 3-1) and Ardrey Kell (6-2, 3-1).

Myers Park plays at Olympic next week. Ardrey Kell plays at Berry.

South Meck -- which beat Myers Park for the first time in seven years -- is in position after a sterling performance from its star.

Newman finished with 29 carries for 183 yards, coming off a career-high 243 yards last week against Olympic. His running, and a first-quarter field goal, were enough on a night when the Sabres defense turned away the Mustangs multiple times when Myers Park was in position to score.

For example, a 30-yard pass from Lucas Lenhoff to Ayden Burkey got the ball to the Sabres’ 22 late in the third quarter. On fourth-and-6 at the Sabres’ 18, Myers Park went for it, but South Meck’s Carter Suzi tackled Myers Park’s Amir Turner 1 yard short of the marker after a quick pass.

Myers Park’s defense forced a three-and-out, and a short punt gave Myers Park the ball at South’s 43 with 43 seconds left in the third quarter.

The Mustangs drove, but stalled at the 5. From there, Myers Park missed a 22-yard field goal to the right with 8:55 to play. South Meck’s Sincere Bennett got close to a block.

Myers Park defense, as it did all night, came up with a stop and appeared to force a punt. A bad snap forced South’s Zane Davis to scramble to his right. It appeared as though Davis might run, but as he slowed up and punted the ball, the officials threw a flag for running into the kicker.

South Meck kept the ball and kept driving. With 2:39 to play, the Mustangs forced another punt.

Myers Park got the ball at its 20 with 2:30 left. The Sabres defense stopped the Mustangs cold. That was it.

The first half was fairly even. Myers Park, when it moved the ball, moved it chunks with the pass. South Meck played slower, using Newman, who had 16 carries for 108 yardsin the half. The Sabres only managed 48 yards passing.

For Myers Park, QB Lucas Lenhoff threw for 115 yards of his 185 yards in the first half, but the Mustangs managed 25 yards rushing on 12 carries in the first two quarters. Lenhoff finished 15-of-36 with two interceptions. His team ran 26 times for 95 yards for the game.

Early on, Myers Park was really clicking and appeared to be going in for an early score, led by Lenhoff. But when the Mustangs got close, the Sabres defense made a big play. South’s Sincere Bennett tipped a pass at the goal line and Benji Tidwell intercepted it at the 1.

The Sabres, who went three-and-out on their first drive, got some big runs from Newman and a long pass from QB Camden Reese on their next one — and South ended up with a 36-yard field goal from Zane Davis and a 3-0 lead.

In the second quarter, the Sabres got another interception. Panos Burlos intercepted Lenhoff at the Sabres’ 40 with 10:15 left in the half.

Notes

Deems May had a good first half for the Mustangs with two sacks and a tackle for a loss. May added another sack in the third quarter.

South Meck’s Bennett played a good game from his defensive back position. Beside the interception, he had several passes defended and a pretty tackle for a loss off a quick read on a screen pass. In the fourth quarter, his aggressive rush off the edge may have had something to do with a 22-yard missed field goal from the Mustangs.

Best nickname award goes to Myers Park’s 6-3, 315-pound senior Jordan Tinsley, who has been called “Pot Roast” since middle school. ... South Meck’s Jalen Alexander had several pass blocks, including on Myers Park’s next-to-last offensive play.

Scoring summary

South Meck 3 0 0 0 — 3

Myers Park 0 0 0 0 — 0

SM: FG 36 Zane Davis

Rewatch the game

Photos from Friday’s game

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Here is a replay of Friday’s game

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