Reynolds looks to improve
A team’s win-loss record doesn’t always tell the whole story. Such is the case for Reynolds junior varsity football. The Demons are 2-4 overall, but there’s ample evidence to suggest that the future has promise.
Reynolds suffered an agonizing 34-33 defeat to longtime rival West Forsyth last week. The Titans took the lead for good on Jerome Warren’s 31-yard touchdown run with 4:41 left to play in the game. The Demons had an opportunity to go back in front, but a lost fumble inside West Forsyth’s 20-yard line ended their hopes for a comeback.
“Our kids are learning how to play through adversity,” said Coach David Hamlin, whose team is 1-1 in Central Piedmont 4-A Conference play. “They continue to work hard, which shows that they believe in what we’re doing. What I’m most satisfied with is the commitment they’re making on and off the field.”
Reynolds took a 20-14 halftime lead on Jake Lang’s nine-yard touchdown pass to Matt Clinton with seven seconds remaining in the second quarter. West Forsyth bounced back to force a 20-20 tie late in the third quarter when Zach Brinkley scored on a 65-yard quarterback keeper.
The Demons struck again with time running out in the third quarter. Rolling to his left, Lang escaped the pass rush and hit Cam Stover with a 72-yard touchdown pass to put RJR back in the lead at 27-20. West Forsyth responded with another decisive drive early in the fourth quarter. Warren ran eight yards for a touchdown and Brinkley ran for the conversion to put the Titans up 28-27.
With 7:17 left to play, it appeared that Reynolds had the momentum it needed to secure the victory. The Demons recovered a fumbled punt return and took over at the West Forsyth 23-yard line. Three plays later, Lang faked a handoff up the middle and darted through an opening on the right side for a 13-yard touchdown run with 5:20 to go.
The Demons’ defense positioned itself to put the game away, but a facemask penalty proved to be costly. West Forsyth’s Warren ran 38 yards downfield, but was stripped of the ball and RJR – leading 33-28 at that time – recovered. The penalty against Reynolds, however, allowed the Titans to keep their drive going and they scored what turned out to be the game-winner on Warren’s run.
“That fumble came at a bad time for us,” said Lang. “We were on the verge of scoring, which would have put us back in the lead again. We just have to learn from our mistakes and we’ll get stronger. So far, I think our season has gone better than a lot of people thought it would. The Reynolds junior varsity has a reputation of being a team that others can beat up on. I feel like we gave West Forsyth a little bit more than they expected. Maybe they thought we would make things easy for them. We’ll go back to work and get ready for the next game.”