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Injuries play big roll in Northridge loss to Hueytown


Northridge High School’s Deondre Rogers (13) picks his way through a hole in the middle of the line during the third quarter Friday night. (Photo by Jason Harless)


 

TUSCALOOSA | Hueytown overcame Northridge, 21-7, in a game Friday night that was marred by injuries. 

 

Both Hueytown and Northridge were forced to adjust to losing key players. Bo Scarbrough left the game after eight minutes of play, following a 20-yard run that landed Northridge its third first down. Hueytown’s starting quarterback, Michael Battle II, left the game at halftime, while James Cox added to the Jaguars’ deficit, leaving in the third quarter when he was hit while catching a pass from Kyle Stuart. 

 

“Two of our big players fell off, and we didn’t know where to go from there,” Northridge tight end Cyontai Lewis said.

 

Hueytown took the lead when Keith Johnson scored a 50-yard touchdown in the second quarter to give the Golden Gophers the lead at half. Without Scarbrough, Northridge struggled to regroup. 

 

“It took a challenge at halftime to realize, ‘Hey, we have to learn to go on,’” Northridge coach Michael Smith said.   

 

Despite injuries, Smith said Northridge made the best of what it had. 

 

“You know, when you’re playing with a six-gun and you’ve got five bullets out of the gun, you don’t have much of a chance, but our kids gave themselves a chance,” Smith said. 

 

For Hueytown, coach Matt Scott used the defensive game to find the win.

 

“I’m just proud of our kids grinding it out there,” Scott said. “They’ve got a great run defense and it was a struggle for us to run the ball, but our kids kind of stuck with it.”

 

Robert Johnson added a 70-yard touchdown for Hueytown in the third quarter, pushing the Gophers’ lead to 14-0.

 

Northridge found its lone scoring chance in the fourth quarter, started by Lewis, who caught a 27-yard pass to bring the ball within inches of the end zone. 

 

“They had been sitting on my corner, so I told the coach, ‘Just (get) me the ball. Put me a pass and I’ll fake a corner and go in,’” Lewis said.

 

Tight end Phillip Cunningham ran the ball to put the Jaguars on the scoreboard. With 17 seconds left, Will Reynolds made a 23-yard touchdown run to mark the final score. 

 

According to Smith, Scarbrough and Cox are “very questionable” for next week. 

 

“They’re the heart of the team,” Lewis said. “Without them, everybody’s going to drop down, but you know, we try to pump each other up.”

 

Next week, Northridge (3-4, 2-3 in Class 6A, Region 5) will visit Jackson-Olin.

 

Hueytown (3-4, 1-4) will host Bessemer City.