Just like UPS ... Brown delivers!Junior QB leads Pisgah in win at West
MILLS RIVER — Pisgah junior backup quarterback McKinley Brown couldn’t have played better in his first starting assignment of the season.
Brown proved that he was more than a credible replacement to injured quarterback Josh Noland, and also made a legitimate case to remove the “backup” label with a near flawless performance in leading the Black Bears to a 55-28 victory over West Henderson in a WNC Athletic Conference game Friday night.
Pisgah moved to 2-5 overall and 1-2 in the WNCAC, while the Falcons sunk to 1-6 overall and 0-3 in the conference. The Black Bears now will prepare for the County Clash with visiting Tuscola on Friday, Oct. 5, at Memorial Stadium.
Brown was impressive with his 11-of-16 and 111 yards passing night that included no interceptions and a touchdown throw of 39 yards to senior Dakota King late in the second quarter. He also rushed for 50 yards on nine carries and scored a two-point conversion.
Equally impressive was junior running back Dustin Messer who gashed the Falcons’ defense for 151 rushing yards on 20 carries, including two touchdown gallops of 16 and one yard.
Pisgah rushed for a season-high 330 yards and passed for 138 yards to finish with a season-high 468 yards in total offense. Senior fullback Garrett Holland had six rushes for 28 yards and scored three times on runs of five (first quarter), six (first quarter) and two (third quarter) yards. He also caught three passes for 44 yards.
Speedy senior Corey Valentine rushed for 61 yards and scored on a 28-yard run, while King had 37 yards rushing to go with his 39 yards receiving. Junior split end Jesse Anderson hauled in four passes for 31 yards and junior Hunter Wike had two receptions for 25 yards.
Junior placekicker Nathan Higdon was 4-of-5 on extra points and drilled a 34-yard field goal.
On defense, the Black Bears’ front seven were nasty, allowing no yards rushing on 16 carries in the first 24 minutes. But it was a completely different story for Pisgah’s secondary as West Henderson quarterback Brandon Letchworth torched the unit for nine completions and 162 yards in just the first two quarters. In the second half, the Falcons managed to gain 105 yards on the ground and added 39 more yards passing to finish with 306 yards in total offense.
Two touchdowns, a missed PAT and a safety (intentional grounding in the end zone) provided Pisgah a 15-7 lead after the first 12 minutes. The Black Bears stretched that advantage to 30-13 by halftime and 44-28 going into the final quarter.