Focus on the positive. Work on the negative.
That proved the mantra for both teams after Rock Hill beat Clover 21-14 in Class AAAA-Region 3 action at District Three Stadium on Friday.
Rock Hill coach Joe Montgomery liked that his team took advantage of five turnovers, but didn’t like the dropped passes.
“We made some errors but really just dropped too many balls,” Montgomery said. “The defense played well. We got a little tired at the end, but that’s what happens when you get in a wrestling match with Clover.”
Clover (0-6, 0-2) controlled the clock with its Wing-T attack in the first quarter. The Blue Eagles ran 16 plays and had success on the ground, but two lost fumbles – which were recovered by Ben Demarest and Tyquan Huntley – canceled out that success.
Rock Hill (2-4, 1-1) took advantage.
Quarterback Brandon Banks hit a 19-yard pass on a seam route by Chris Salerno set up a 15-yard touchdown run by Justin Stokes. The Bearcats led 7-0 after one quarter.
Jua’Quan Feaster tacked on a 4-yard score for a 14-0 lead with 10:45 left in the second quarter. Clover threatened to answer after a 26-yard burst by Ladarius Adams, but Deante McGraw intercepted Scott Jackson two plays later.
Banks and Salerno then re-connected for a 41-yard pass on the same seam route. Banks then lofted a fade to Jermaine White for a 26-yard touchdown and 21-0 lead.
Clover, meanwhile, committed a fourth first-half turnover, a fumble recovery by Cameron Bell.
The Blue Eagles drove into Rock Hill territory twice in the third quarter, the second after an interception by Chase Galant. Clover, however, was stuffed on fourth down and committed its fifth turnover, this one a fumble recovery by Emanuel Jones.
Clover faced one more fourth-and-goal with 4:19 remaining, and Adams finally punched it. The Blue Eagles recovered the onside kick and scored again in the final minute on a 1-yard run by Zach Conrad for the final margin.
“We were doing the same thing in the first quarter as we were the last drive,” Clover coach Chad Smith said. “After the fumble, it’s almost like our kids had to reset. We have to get to the point where that doesn’t happen.”
Rock Hill 21, Clover 14
RH-Justin Stokes 15 run (Easton Templeton kick)
RH-Jua’Quan Feaster 4 run (Templeton kick)
RH-Brandon Banks 26 pass to Jermaine White (Templeton kick)
C-Ladarius Adams 1 run (Kick failed)
C-Zach Conrad 1 run (Scott Jackson 2PC pass to Landon Harkey)
RUSHING — CLOVER: Adams 27-104, Chase Galant 8-28, Conrad 7-17, RJ Moore 4-2, Tanner Whitley 4-32, Jakob Morrison 3-5, Nate Morrison 1-2, Jackson 9-12. ROCK HILL: Stokes 11-44, Feaster 2-10, Banks 1-12.
PASSING — CLOVER: Jackson 3-7-1, 28 yards. ROCK HILL: Banks 16-37-1, 215 yards.
RECEIVING — CLOVER: Adams 2-19, Harkey 1-9. ROCK HILL: Feaster 4-61, Chris Salerno 3-69, White 2-39, John McCullough 2-9, James Lindsay 3-18.
RECORDS: Clover 0-6 (0-2), Rock Hill 2-4 (1-1).