It took some time for Newton-Conover to get going. They suffered some red zone woes in the first quarter. They were stopped at the Hickory four-yard line. The Red Tornadoes were not able to get a drive going however. The Red Devils got the ball back inside the 50 and made it to the Hickory red zone again, but did not punch it in until the second quarter.
The Red Devils were able to reach the end zone on the first play in the second quarter. On fourth and goal from the 18, quarterback Shamar Baker hit Ernie Squarles for the 18-yard touchdown pass. The Red Devils went for the two-point conversion and Baker was able to run it to give Newton-Conover the 8-0 lead. The Red Tornadoes would get a drive going. A 53-yard pass from quarterback Derrien Phillips to Kevin Shuford ignited Hickory and they were able to cap it off with a Phillips 16-yard pass to Antonio Parks. The Tornadoes tried to match the Devils point for point on the two-point conversion try but were unsuccessful.
Hickory stopped Newton-Conover on the ensuing drive and made it near the Red Devil ten-yard line. But the drive was stopped when Phillips was intercepted by James Woods near the goal line. The Red Devils would strike again when Baker hit Jahiem Mullen for a short pass that he took 53 yards for a touchdown. Addison Hayes’s extra point kick made it 15-6.
The Red Tornadoes would once again turn to big plays to get back into the game. Derrien Phillips would hit Jaekwon Staton for a 36-yard pass that bounced off a Red Devil defender’s hand. Phillips would take the ball in himself from the two-yard line to put Hickory’s next touchdown on the board with just eight seconds to go. Harrison Boston’s extra point kick cut the lead to 15-13. But that was enough time for Myles Baker to return the ensuing kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown before half-time. The extra point kick by Addison Hayes was good and the Red Devils took the 22-13 lead to half-time.
In the second half, things continued to right for the Red Devils and continued to go wrong for the Red Tornadoes. Tylor Stinson extended the Red Devils’ lead with a 25-yard touchdown run. Shamar Baker ran it in for the two-point conversion. The Red Devils fumbled on their next drive, but the Red Tornadoes would fumble it back a few plays later. Stinson would score another touchdown for the Red Devils, this time from 24 yards out. Baker would hit Ernie Squarles for the two-point conversion to make the score a dominant 38-13 score.
The defense would get in on the scoring when defensive end Jordan Thompson took a Hickory fumble seven yards for a touchdown. The Red Tornadoes would score two touchdowns in the fourth quarter to make the score a little closer. Phillips connected with A.J. Chisholm for a nine-yard touchdown pass and took the last one in himself for a one-yard scoring run. The final score was 45-26.
Hickory will face another tough challenge next Friday as they travel to Hunter Huss. The Huskies narrowly lost to Clover 42-41 in overtime. Newton-Conover will travel to face East Burke. East Burke lost to Freedom 48-8.