Yellow Jackets blank Ben L. Smith, 47-0
For the second week in a row, Lee County football rolled on.
Quarterback Emond Caldwell had 147 passing yards and a touchdown and running back Jerry Pullum had three total scores as the Yellow Jackets (2-0) defeated the Ben L. Smith Golden Eagles 47-0 Friday night.
This came seven days after a 42-8 win against Rolesville in which the second- and third-string defense played the second half. It’s been a good start for head coach Burton Cates.
“We made a few changes, had a few new people in the lineup and I thought they played well,” Cates said. “When you win 47-0, a lot goes right.”
Things went right on the first drive of the game. Just three minutes into the action, Lee County’s Dylan Spurlin blocked a Golden Eagle punt and recovered it at the Smith 30.
Six plays later, Caldwell hit wide receiver Josh Nguyen in the middle of the end zone on a slant route for a touchdown. After a Ben L. Smith three-and-out, Caldwell connected with Duane Bland for a 50-yard reception two plays before he took a 2-yard QB sneak for another score. All that and there were still four minutes left in the first quarter.
Cates spoke about the importance of getting off to a good start.
“(Ben L. Smith) had lost last week to Northwest Guilford in the last eight seconds of the game,” Cates said, “so we knew that if we got on them a lot of good things could happen for us. The kids responded well.”
Late in the second quarter, Caldwell handed off to Pullum, who hesitated, then lofted a pretty pass safely into Nguyen’s hands in the end zone for a 20-0 lead.
“Jerry does a good job with that and John went and ran a great pattern,” Cates said.
Pullum had two touchdown runs in the third quarter, and Bubba Wilson tacked on another score in the fourth quarter. Andrew Phillips capped off the scoring by returning an interception of Ben L. Smith quarterback Myles White 35 yards for a score with 4:43 left in the game.
The action ended with just over two minutes left in the final frame when White was hit on a play and stayed down for a while. The coaches called off the game, which by that point was playing with a running clock. Cates said White suffered a neck injury, but he was moving his other extremities and was taken to the hospital.
Pullum had 105 rushing yards and 24 receiving yards on top of the passing touchdown. Wilson had 50 rushing yards, while Bland finished the night with 71 receiving yards for Yellow Jackets.
White had 84 passing yards and 24 rushing yards for the Golden Eagles, while Tyrell Dumpson contributed 41 receiving yards and Jamerick Wallace had 52 rushing yards.
The Yellow Jackets will travel to Raleigh next week to take on Athens Drive. Cates said he likes where his team is at, but is cautious.
“We’ve still got to get better. It’s a good group. We’ve got several starters back that play well,” he said. “(It’s the) same thing we were at last year and then we got beat by Athens Drive, so we’ll just see. Next week is an important game for us.”