Cougars fall behind early on the way to 63-28 loss at SW Onslow

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JACKSONVILLE -— In a span of less than two minutes late in the first quarter of Friday’s state 2-A football second-round playoff game, SouthWest Edgecombe found itself in hot water on a cold field at Southwest Onslow.

The Cougars, the No. 6 seed, saw the No. 3 Stallions score the game’s first touchdown on a 90-yard drive with 2:55 left in the opening quarter. When the Cougars turned it over on downs on their ensuing possession, Jakoby Johnson ran in a 33-yard TD and the Stallions were ahead 14-0 on the way to a 63-28 victory.

The loss ended the Cougars season with a 10-3 record while SWO, also 10-3, moves into the third round against No. 2 East Bladen, a 68-28 winner over Greene Central on Friday.

After his TD, Johnson recovered a SWE fumble near midfield and then added a 15-yard touchdown run to put SWO up 21-0.

Dashon Bandy’s 73-yard TD reception from quarterback Tre Williams put SouthWest Edgecombe on the scoreboard with 9:18 left in the second quarter. However, the Stallions answered with an 81-yard scoring drive, capped by fullback Caleb Mahone’s 1-yard TD plunge.

SouthWest Edgecombe recovered a Stallions fumble inside the 10-yard line, setting up Jayden Lewis’ 7-yard TD pass to T.J. Harris with 17.5 seconds left in the half. Dillon Garbrandt’s second PAT left the Cougars trailing 28-14 going into halftime.

But the Stallions slammed the door with three third-quarter TDs to take a 49-14 lead.

Jordan Clayton had a 9-yard TD run and Bandy scored from the same distance in the fourth quarter but SWO capped its high-scoring night with two more touchdown runs.