Pinecrest defeats Union Pines, 64-6

Pinecrest running back Nahjiir Seagraves (32) is congratulated after his touchdown by Hunter Neifert (83) after scoring against Union Pines on the road Friday.

The build up for the Battle of the Pines matchup was there before kickoff. Students sections chanting back and forth, a parking lot packed with cars and people flooding into Woodrow Wilhoit Stadium, making the regular season finale have an electric feel before kickoff.

Once the ball was pooched for a Pinecrest onside recovery, and the moments to follow, the excitement died down as the expected unfolded on the gridiron with Pinecrest handling its cross-county rival Union Pines.

Speaking of expected results, North Moore improved to 9-1 on the season with a convincing win at Chatham Central on Friday night to set itself up with a 1A playoff spot.

As we go ahead and prepare for the postseason, here’s other stats that stood out in Week 11:

Top Team: Pinecrest.

Taking possession on offense to start the game with the onside kick, the scoring avalanche continued for nearly every drive of the first half for the Patriots against Union Pines. Two touchdowns came in less than three minutes to start the game. The first quarter saw 31 points posted on the visitors side of the scoreboard, and the Pinecrest defense held the Vikings at bay for the entirety of the contest.

The wave of momentum continues to build. Pinecrest carries that into the playoffs after the win over its rivals and four Sandhills Athletic Conference wins before that one. Pinecrest opens the 4A state playoffs with a home game against Rolesville Friday.

Top Performer: Justis Dorsett, North Moore.

There’s something about playing Chatham Central that the senior running back must like. Dorsett rushed for 263 yards and four of the five North Moore touchdowns in the win at Bear Creek Friday.

In the last calendar year, Dorsett has rushed for 12 touchdowns and 630 yards in the two meetings against the Bears. There are many running backs across the country that would like to have that total for a season, let alone two games.

Other standout performances:

Braden Cole, K, Pinecrest - On top of a perfectly executed onside kick, the senior also was good on his one field goal attempt from 39 yards and connected on three point after touchdown attempts.

Chaz Leach, DB, Pinecrest - The reserve defensive back was in the right place at the right time as he pulled in a tipped pass on defense for the Patriots for an interception in the first half.

Xavier Dowd, RB, Pinecrest - One touch of the football and untouched to the end zone for the senior running back. His 75 yards on the ground on that one touchdown was the most yards of anyone in the game.

Nathan Reyes, OL, Pinecrest - On top of helping clear the way for the Patriots to rush for more than 270 yards, the senior offensive lineman scored as a part of a jumbo package in the third quarter.

Javory Wall, RB, North Moore - The other North Moore touchdown in the win came from the senior from 13 yards out. He finished with 30 yards rushing.

Olajawuan Person, DB, North Moore - The senior got back to his ballhawking ways with his seventh interception of the season in the win. After having one interception through the Mustangs’ first five games, this was his first in the last three games.

Caleb Sexton, FB, North Moore - The junior rushed for 71 yards in the win for the Mustangs, a season-high for him.

Josiah Sauls, LB, Union Pines - In his final high school football game, the senior scooped up a rumble and returned it 56 yards for the Vikings’ only touchdown.

Amari McKinnon, LB, Union Pines - Union Pines got its only stop of the first half when the senior snagged a fumble late in the first half.

Contact Jonathan Bym at (910) 693-2470 or jonathan@thepilot.com.

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