North Moore Faces Fayetteville Christian
For the third straight week, the North Moore football team is on the road and once again they will face a team that features a strong running game. The Mustangs travel to Fayetteville Christian School for the first ever meeting between these two programs.
Fayetteville Christian School is a member of the North Carolina Independent School Athletic Association. Last year, the Fayetteville school finished with a 5-6 overall record after being knocked out of the NCISAA Division III state playoffs by eventual state champion Davidson Day School.
This year Fayetteville Christian started the season with a 28-14 victory over Trinity Christian. Last week they lost an offensive shootout with 2-A St. Paul 58-40.
According to North Moore coach Greg Simmons, they are very athletic and fast. They feature a big running back, senior Bernard Smalls, who gained nearly 1,600 yards last year and has gained nearly 300 yards in two games this year. Smalls weighs 205 pounds and is a very physical and punishing runner.
“We will have to gang-tackle Smalls,” said Simmons. “He’s a powerful runner, and we will have to wrap him up and gang-tackle. They have other weapons they can rely on, and they’re fast and athletic. A lot of them play both ways on offense and defense. Defensively, we will have to contain them and not let them get outside.”
One of those other offensive weapons is sophomore Montra Strothers, who has gained 231 yards this season and scored a pair of touchdowns, one on an 82-yard run. Their quarterback is junior Tyler Sweatt, who passed for three touchdowns against St. Paul while hitting on eight of 13 passes for 119 yards.
One of Sweatt’s favorite receivers is senior Bryan Moore, who has caught seven passes for 115 yards and three touchdowns this year. Last year’s leading receiver, senior captain Al Williams, is another target for Sweatt. He pulled in 38 receptions for 873 yards last year.
The defense is led by senior linebacker Andre Starks, who had 84 tackles, 50 solo last year.
Another linebacker that is one of the leading tacklers so far this year is sophomore linebacker Aaron Martin.
Fayetteville Christian School also has some good- sized linemen, including defensive end and senior captain Jacob Goetsch, who weighs in at 230 pounds. Juniors Justin Baldwin and Chase Zeegers are 250-plus pounds.
To be successful on offense, the Mustangs must cut down on turnovers and penalties. They have committed eight turnovers in two games and have been flagged for 15 penalties for 125 yards.
“We have to do a much better job of taking care of the ball on offense,” said Simmons. “We can’t turn the ball over if we want to be successful. I feel like if we can do that we can move the ball.”
The game is scheduled to kick off at 7:30 p.m.
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