OXFORD — Javon Bullock scored on runs of 72 and 50 yards the first two times he touched the ball for J.F. Webb in the first quarter on Friday night, leading the Warriors to a 26-6 victory on Friday night over cross-county rival Granville Central.
Bullock accounted for two more touchdowns on the night, scoring on a 6-yard run later in the first quarter and a 35-yarder in the second quarter. Ikeem Hunt rounded out the scoring for Webb by catching a two-point conversion pass from Braden Cooper.
The win raised Webb’s record to 2-2 overall and 1-0 in the Northern Lakes Athletic Conference, where it shares first place in the standings with Vance County and Southern Durham.
“I was really proud of the way we came out,” Webb head coach Lamont Robinson said. “I think we executed well in the first quarter, we did a lot of things. For the most part, for everything that was going on in the first quarter, once we got them locked back in, they were OK.”
Robinson’s comment alluded to an eventful opening frame that along with Bullock’s two long carries included five fumbled snaps by Granville Central and a controversial sideline play that directly or indirectly led to six unsportsmanlike-conduct penalties, an ejection, a scuffle and a coaches conference at midfield.
But unlike the week before, the teams were able to complete all four quarters of play.
There was no repeat of the power outage that curtailed Webb’s Sept. 24 game against Central Davidson at halftime. Between games, crews repaired the electrical feed to the stadium lights, and pruned the tree that had caught fire and shorted it out.
Granville Central, which is now 0-6 on the season, opened the game with good field position but had to punt after a second-down penalty left quarterback Luke Sharon and his offense a few too many extra yards to make up.
Webb got the ball on its own 33, and immediately had to retreat five more yards after a false start. But the next snap produced a handoff to Bullock, who capitalized on a huge hole the Warriors offensive line opened on the right side.
The ensuing kickoff left the visiting Panthers again with good field position, but two fumbled snaps kept them from developing any momentum and the Webb defense stopped runner Trent Harringon on third and 23.
Webb’s offense set up shop on its own 25, with Daymion Williams getting the drive’s first handoff and taking the ball to midfield. The next play went to Bullock, and as with the first drive, he didn’t stop running until he’d found the end zone.
“The line did a great job today,” Robinson said. “Being a triple-option team, we’ve got to make sure we’re making the right reads. Javon did a great job when he got his opportunities. There are some things he needs to work on, but he’s a great back, and hopefully he can continue to improve week by week.”
Two more fumbled snaps aborted Granville Central’s third drive, with Webb taking over after a recovery at the Panthers’ 46. Cooper tried a couple of keepers, the second taking him down to about the 4-yard line while also triggering a major argument.
Granville Central’s players and coaches were convinced Cooper had fumbled the ball at the sideline, and that they had recovered, but the officials didn’t see it that way and Webb retained possession. The Panthers got two quick unsportsmanlike-conduct penalties, one on a player and another on the bench.
Head coach Travis Hairston’s disagreement was loud enough to be heard throughout the stadium. But a holding call, a fumbled snap of its own and an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty of its own kept Webb from capitalizing.
The Panthers got the punt on their own 8 yard line, and immediately fumbled another snap. Webb recovered, and Bullock tallied for the third time following another set-up run by Williams. Cooper and Hunt converted the two-pointer to make the score 20-0.
Hairston’s participation in the evening ended a couple minutes later, after Granville Central’s players and bench got two more unsportsmanlike-conduct penalties. Referees explained to Robinson that the bench penalty was against an assistant coach, but for being the bench’s second of the game, Noel was ejected.
The ensuing Panther drive saw the two teams scuffle briefly near the Granville Central bench, with Webb getting its second unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty of the quarter. The referee at that point called an officials’ timeout and summoned the coaches to midfield for a conference.
When play resumed, Webb took over on downs after a quarterback sack, and made steady progress up the field until a fumbled snap killed its momentum early in the second quarter. The Panthers got the ball on their own 35, and on the first play of the drive, Sharon and Harrington hooked up on a swing pass that freed Harrington for Granville Central’s only touchdown of the game.
Robinson said that amid the controversy, the Warriors “did lose focus for a little bit, but we got them back in.” Harrington “ran a great route” and the defender covering him “was just out of position on the tackle.”
The remainder of the second quarter saw Webb play some ball control on offense and stop another Panthers drive thanks to an interception by Hunt.
In the third quarter, Webb scored on the opening possession, Bullock taking it to the end zone from about 35 yards out and using a nifty move near the end to elude a tackle. That concluded the night’s scoring, as Webb was content to play ball control for the remainder of the game.
Webb’s next plays Friday night at 7 p.m. and is once again at home, this time for its Homecoming game against Carrboro. Granville Central, goes on the road to play Southern Durham.
“We’re just a team that’s got to learn how to start winning. And we’re getting there,” Robinson said. “But Central played hard. They played really hard. I’ve been where they are, so I understand. They have a real young team and they have nothing but upside.”
Contact Ray Gronberg at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 252-436-2850.