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  • Writer's pictureCCN - Columbus County News

The Pack Advance to Round 4 in the Playoffs by Squeaking by the Bears

The Whiteville Wolfpack did something Friday night they haven't done since 1987. They won a NCHSAA Round 3 football contest. Not only did the 1987 team advance past the 3rd round, but they also won the State Championship. The Pack came back from being 17 points down, late in the 3rd quarter, to take a 25-24 win over the Bears from Hertford County when Grayson Creech connected on a 30-yard field goal as time expired.

Whiteville started strong forcing the Bears, who came into the game averaging over 48 points per game, to punt on their first possession. The Wolfpack took over and drove down the field easily taking a 7-0 lead, with 6:23 left in the quarter, after a 1 yard TD run by Luke Odham and Creech's point after. Whiteville held Hertford County on downs on their next possession but this is where it appeared the Packs wheels fell off. On Whiteville's next possession a fumble recovery, and 56 yard TD return, by the Bears Elijah Outlaw made the score 8-7 after the 2 point conversion.

With 2:53 remaining in the first half Hertford County increased its lead to 16-7 when the Bears quarterback, Keveon Rogers, connected with Justin Holloman on a 32 yard TD pass. Again the 2 point conversion was good. The Bears came out of halftime picking up where they left off scoring on a 2 yard run by Rogers. Rogers also ran the extra point as Hertford County stretched the lead to 24-7. This would be the last points the Wolfpack would allow and over the next 15 minutes and 35 seconds the fans at historic Legion Stadium would witness a couple of Wolfpack breaks, a little history, and a lot of Legion Stadium Magic.

The Pack cut the lead to 24-15 with 1:25 left in the 3rd quarter when Nupee Powell found the end zone from 16 yards away. Powell also ran the 2 point conversion. With 8:31 left in the game Odham scored his 2nd TD of the game on a 4 yard run. Creech's point after brought the Pack to within 2 points, 24-22.

On Hertford County's final possession of the game they worked the play clock to their advantage eating away at the game clock and marching down the field. Finally the Pack held the Bears on a 4th down play and took over on their own 43 yard line with only 1:09 left to play. Coach JP Price worked his time outs perfectly, the Pack came up with a couple big plays, and an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on the Bears sideline moved the ball to the Hertford County 13 yard line with :04 left on the clock when Creech stepped on the field to attempt the 30 FG yard attempt. A perfect snap by JT Todd, a perfect hold by Odham, and a perfect kick by Creech, as time expired, added to Whiteville Wolfpack football history.

Todd, Odham, and Creech all happen to be Juniors. Todd was also snapping on an injured ankle that took him out of the game on Whiteville's first offensive possession. The Pack's Nupee Powell was named the Kool 103.9 Player of the Game for his performance replacing JT Todd after he injured his ankle.

#2 East Duplin came away with a 28-27 win over #7 Clinton when Clinton failed on a 2 point conversion after scoring inside the 1-minute mark. With Whiteville being the #3 seed, the Pack will have to travel for the first time in the playoffs. The Pack will travel to Beulaville on Friday to take on the Panthers. Game time will be announced later in the week.

Story by Frankie Burney Photos by Savanna Elkins

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