There were no handshakes among players at Friday night’s 1A Northwest conference matchup between North Stokes and Walkertown. The Vikings fell 55-24 in a contentious game that came to a halt with 48 seconds left in the fourth quarter. At least three of North’s players were disqualified and the visiting team made their way off the field before the game concluded.
“It’s boys’ emotions getting the best of them. The officials did the best they could to control the situation,” said Vikings head coach Mitch Reeves. “No one was ejected so it won’t affect next week.”
According to the NCHSAA sportsmanship policy, if ejected, players could miss the next two contests.
A scuffle broke out in the third quarter with penalties called on both sides. In the fourth quarter, a late hit out of bounds and facemask ignited another firestorm on the sidelines. Three of North’s seniors were removed from the game.
“The game was settled at that point. They were frustrated but they have to act like young men. I admire their passion, but they’ve got to channel that on the field,” Reeves said.
North broke the scoring column first when Jackson Moorefield connected with Logan Stevens inside the 10-yard line. Moorefield ran in the touchdown and senior Andrew Lankford tacked on the extra point.
Walkertown responded with a trio of first downs before tying the game with a minute left in the first quarter.
Stevens leaped in the air for another big catch in the top of the second, but coming down twisted his ankle keeping him out of the game for the rest of the night.
“He made a great play. He was walking afterwards so hopefully it’s not too bad and we’ll get him ready for next week,” Reeves said.
Austin Tucker, North’s 6’5 315-pound senior, was also sidelined with a MCL sprain from practice a few days earlier.
“Coming off a bye you usually get a little healthier, but it seemed to do the opposite for us. But we were definitely ready to get back on the field,” Reeves said.
The Wolfpack scored before halftime giving them a 28-7 lead.
In the third quarter, Walkertown added another touchdown run within a minute widening their margin 34-7.
North responded when Tevin Carter broke free with a run down the left side to the 33-yard line. Blake Williams spun free for a hard earned first down. The Vikings made it to the 15-yard line and Lankford kicked a field goal.
Walkertown continued to dominate with two more touchdowns to round out the third quarter.
With nine minutes left in the game Carter added a touchdown run from the five-yard line. Lankford added the extra point making the score 48-17.
On North’s next possession, Austin Garcia broke a tackle and sprinted inside the 20-yard line before running in a touchdown.
“We’ll make a few tweaks before next week,” Reeves said. “Walkertown is a tough team, but I feel like we could have played tougher.”
North Stokes (4-4, 1-2) travels to Winston Salem Prep (4-5, 3-1) for a Northwest 1A Conference game Friday.
Amanda Dodson can be reached at 336-813-2426 or on Twitter at AmandaTDodson.