Randleman’s Anthony Santos tries to pull away from Asheboro’s Julian Faz on Friday night. (PJ Ward-Brown/Randolph Record)
ASHEBORO – Randleman clicked better in the second half of a 24-0 season-opening victory Friday night at Asheboro.
The Blue Comets never got into a groove.
Those factors allowed the Tigers to avenge last year’s season-opening loss.
“They had to live with last year’s score all year,” Randleman coach Shane Timmons said of his players.
Even as they wasted a few chances until late in the first half, there were reasons for the Tigers to be pleased.
“They kind of got the butterflies out of their system,” Timmons said. “Anytime you get a Game 1 win, you feel good about yourself.”
Quarterback Christian Long scored on a 1-yard run in the second quarter to build a 10-0 lead after teammate Christian McCloud opened the scoring with a 25-yard field goal. Amarion Moton and Micah Thurston added 2-yard touchdown runs in the third quarter.
After a combined seven shutouts in 2019 and the 2021 spring season, Randleman was without a blanking last fall. The Tigers will like the feel of this result.
“Really proud of their effort and I hope they enjoy it for sure,” Timmons said.
Asheboro missed scoring chances, particularly by fumbling on a second-and-goal play from the 5-yard line.
“Couldn’t get out of our own way,” Asheboro coach Blake Brewer said. “I thought our guys hustled. We just didn’t play well enough to win.”
Asheboro was limited to 114 yards of total offense. Valentino Mark was charted for 43 rushing yards.
“We didn’t put ourselves in good positions,” Brewer said. “We put our defense in bad spots. They continued to fight.”
For Randleman, Thurston gained 50 yards on 12 carries, Moton had 49 yards on 10 attempts and Long added 42 yards on nine rushes. Tyshaun Goldston, a transfer from Asheboro, racked up a game-high 55 receiving yards on four catches.
Providence Grove 31, East Davidson 14: At Climax, Chase Whitaker scored two touchdowns and Andrew Cantor threw two scoring passes and the host Patriots rolled.
Zane Cheek scored on a run, Zander Cheek scored on a short pass play from Cantor, and Whitaker reached the end zone on a 2-yard quarterback keeper and Tucker Batten booted a 31-yard field goal in the first half as Providence Grove built a 24-7 lead.
Zander Cheek, who gained 62 rushing yards, picked up 100 yards on four receptions. Zane Cheek gained 63 yards on the ground.
Southwestern Randolph 62, Jordan-Matthews 6: At Asheboro, Easton Clapp ran for two touchdowns and threw for two more and Adam Cole scored three touchdowns as the host Cougars set a single-game school record for points.
Cole scored on two rushing plays and on a reception. He had 116 rushing yards in the first half.
Eli Gravely also caught a touchdown pass. Colton Law and Asher Perkins scored on runs and Carson Norris returned a fumble 40 yards for a touchdown.
Eastern Alamance 42, Eastern Randolph 28: At Mebane, the host Eagles raced to an early lead and held on, handing the Wildcats their first regular-season loss since the 2021 spring season.
Eastern Randolph quarterback Stratton Barwick threw for two touchdown passes to Nicah Taylor and was intercepted twice. Taylor collected 136 receiving yards on six catches.
Trinity 52, Chatham Central 0: At Bear Creek, Dominic Payne threw for three touchdowns and ran for another as the visiting Bulldogs rolled up their most points since 2018 to win their opener for the season in a row.
Payne racked up 115 passing yards and 91 rushing yards. Bo Gibson, who gained 82 yards on the ground, and Dylan Hodges, who picked up 69 rushing yards, both scored touchdowns.
West Davidson 27, Wheatmore 21: At Trinity, the Warriors were involved in just their second game since 2019 with a final margin in single digits and they came up short in the home game.
Jon Kelly scored two touchdowns and rushed for 135 yards for Wheatmore. Riley Strickland threw for a touchdown and three interceptions.