Northwestern fully introduced the “NASCAR” package to Region 3 Friday night in a statement-making 45-15 win over York at District 3 Stadium.
Trojan offensive formations that include speedy defensive backs Jaquavious Mackey and Corey Seargent are termed “NASCAR,” but Northwestern coaches should call any offensive set containing Dupree Hart the “sportscar” package. The dynamic junior caught 10 passes for 153 yards and three touchdowns to help Northwestern (9-0, 5-0 in Region 3) win in a clash of undefeated teams.
“The last couple of games I’ve been seeing a lot of double teams, and Quadarius (Fair) has been open a lot. I think they started trying to double-team him some, and it shows you can’t double-team any receiver in this offense,” Hart said.
Seargent and Mackey’s main offensive contributions were an 82-yard touchdown catch and a 55-yard reception that set up another score, somewhat inconsequential in the grand scheme of the game. But their speed and the aggressive decision to use them on both sides of the ball embodied Northwestern’s performance on the chilliest night of the school year so far.
“They just bring a different dynamic over to the offensive side,” Northwestern coach Kyle Richardson said. “We’ve got speed across the board when we go NASCAR. Of 70 plays, they’re probably only playing 20, 25. But they’re 25 pretty fast plays.”
York (8-1, 4-1) grabbed the attention of a large crowd at District 3 with a fine first drive that took just more than 2 minutes to move 72 yards. Deshaw Andrews hit Daurice Simpson with a low, 12-yard touchdown pass, and Ryan Moore scampered in for the 2-point conversion to put the visiting Cougars in front 8-0.
Bobby Carroll’s bunch would add only three more yards of offense before the halftime break. Northwestern’s reaction was to rip off the next 38 points and grab the game by the scruff.
“We just came out lazy,” Seargent said. “That second drive we had to shut them down; we had to show them what Northwestern’s about.”
Richardson was pleased with the adjustment his defense made. The Trojans still have only allowed one team in nine games – Byrnes – to score more than 20 points.
“Our defense got off to a slow start, which we’ve got to correct,” Richardson said. “But the good thing is they come to the benches, they come to the chairs, they make the adjustments and then they go right back onto the field, and you saw the result.”
After York’s opening salvo, Northwestern answered with an equally nice drive, three long runs by Julian Shockley leading to a 1-yard TD plunge by Mason Rudolph, part of his 64 yards rushing and pair of scores. The Trojans then forced a punt and converted a 72-yard drive into seven more points, Rudolph finding Hart wide open in the left side of the end zone for the 14-8 lead.
Sully Foy’s 23-yard field goal and Rudolph’s second 1-yard TD run of the night just before the half sent the Trojans into the break ahead 24-8. They had possession first in the third quarter and immediately added to the lead. A 37-yard pass to Fair set up Hart’s second touchdown, a 13-yard grab. Desmond Leak intercepted Andrews on York’s next drive, before Seargent ran beneath Rudolph’s perfect throw down the middle of the lot for an 82-yard score. The defensive back had to admit it felt good being on the other end of such a long touchdown pass.
“It was fun, man,” Seargent said, a grin consuming his face. “I’m glad they’ve moved me over there to help the team out.”
York finally broke its offensive slump with a nice drive capped off by Andrews’ short touchdown run with 2 minutes, 23 seconds left in the third, but the damage had been inflicted. The Trojans, who have now beaten York 17 out of 19 games, milked the clock most of the fourth quarter, before Hart finished off a nearly 8-minute possession with a 27-yard catch between two Cougar defenders, and pin-balled into the end zone.
“Yeah, he’s pretty good,” said Richardson, smiling.
What else was there to say about Hart, or his team?
Northwestern 45, York 15
YCHS – Daurice Simpson 12 pass from Deshaw Andrews (Ryan Moore run)
NHS – Mason Rudolph 1 run (Sully Foy kick)
NHS – Dupree Hart 13 pass from Rudolph (Foy kick)
NHS – Foy 23 yard field goal
NHS – Rudolph 1 run (Foy kick)
NHS – Hart 15 pass from Rudolph (Foy kick)
NHS – Corey Seargent 82 pass from Rudolph (Foy kick)
YCHS – Andrews 1 run (Buddy Anderson kick)
NHS – Hart 27 pass from Rudolph (Foy kick)
RUSHING YCHS: Ryan Moore 19-94; Deshaw Andrews 13-66; Jerome Pettiway 1-(-20). NHS: Julian Shockley 12-59; Mason Rudolph 14-64; Dupree Hart 4-11; Tori Adams 1-5.
PASSING YCHS: Andrews 30-17-1-1. NHS: Rudolph 28-23-2-4.
RECEIVING YCHS: Daurice Simpson 5-32; Josh McCoy 4-21; Moore 3-17; Markel Castle 3-17; Kyron Schrouder 2-15. NHS: Hart 10-153; Fair 4-84; Seargent 2-82; Mackey 2-54; Shockley 1-17; Mustafia Love 2-1; Davion Blake 1-23; Logan Rudolph 1-5.
RECORDS YCHS 8-1, 4-1; NHS 9-0, 5-0.
Bret McCormick • 803-329-4032; Twitter: @BretJust1T