Northwest Guilford’s star has returned. Thomas Hennigan made his first start since a micro-fracture in his left knee during a Viking loss to Southeast on 9/9/16, but it was sophomore Cameron Cloud and senior Eddie Selby who led the Vikings in a 34-18 rout of the Ragdsdale Tigers on Monday night at R. L. Billings Stadium. Cloud rushed for two touchdowns, and Selby picked off a trio of Eric Williams passes in the win for the Vikings.
Northwest got off to an early start after Eddie Selby intercepted Williams on the third play of the game. It was none other than Thomas Hennigan who put the first six points on the board. Hennigan, who played quarterback all night, led the Vikings on a quick, four-play, 32-yard drive on the Vike’s opening possession and rushed for a yard to get the score, just a minute and fourteen seconds after the Vikings’ offense took the field.
The second Vikings drive was just as dominant, also only four plays, for 40 yards that was consummated when Zach Tyler broke free and rushed 26 yards to put the Vikings up 14-0.
The Tigers’ first score of the night came on a Jarious Drayton 19-yard run. Ragsdale began to find success behind the high-powered arm of its 6’5’’, 207lb senior quarterback Eric Williams on the scoring drive.
The next score was on Northwest sophomore Cameron Cloud’s first touch of the game, a 74-yard run, with 57 seconds to go in the first half.
“When (Ragsdale) started throwing the ball in the first quarter, I saw they were going to throw it more than we expected,” Northwest coach Jared Rolfes said. “There’s some things that we have to clean up in our secondary, but the other thing that we have to work on is getting pressure (to the quarterback).”
Williams showed off his arm with 5:01 remaining in the third quarter when he connected with his favorite target of the evening, Dominick Parker, for a 31-yard touchdown to pull the Tigers within 9. The score was 21-12.
21-12 was as close as the Tigers would get, however.
Four minutes after the Parker touchdown reception, Kyle Finnie burst through the middle for 14 yards on 2nd and goal, from the 16, and on the next play followed the same route to finish the drive for the Vikings.
Both teams struggled with penalties, with each team in double digits in infractions called, for more than 100 yards combined.
Northwest’s Cloud and Ragsdale’s Drayton added touchdown runs in the fourth quarter, to make the final score 34-18.
Although the Tigers passed for 262 yards, the Vikings have found a home for senior Eddie Selby at the cornerback position.
Selby, starting his first game on defense, was happy with the results.
“This was my first start on defense, and I wanted to contribute as much as I could,” Selby said. “I haven’t played defense since sophomore year. This is a good game, a great game, for me. Hopefully I can do it again next week.”
Selby added interceptions on the opening play, and his third one, with 4:43 left to play, iced the win for Northwest.
Rolfes praised the efforts of Selby, and also of Thomas Hennigan, who only practiced for two days prior to returning to the field for the Vikings.
“(Selby) did a great job,” Rolfes said. “We’ve felt like the one corner spot is somewhere we’ve been looking for somebody, and the last couple weeks they have tried to rep (Selby) at (corner). That’s big. We become very athletic in the secondary with Eddie playing there.”
“Thomas (Hennigan) only practiced for two days. He, in a lot of ways, was who he normally is, but he’s only going to get better as he gets stronger and gets back on his feet.”
The Vikings will look to field a completely healthy team, barring any injuries between now and Friday, when they take on High Point Central in their second conference game of the season. Junior QB Jacob Leonard, who was placed on concussion protocol after taking a hit in Northwest’s loss to Reidsville, will be completely cleared on Tues (10-11).
Ragsdale faces off with conference and cross-town rival Southwest Guilford Friday at home. Ragsdale, (2-1) this season at Kenneth T. Miller Stadium, looks to give the Cowboys their second loss in a week after starting the season (6-0). The Cowboys will be looking to get back to their winning ways and obtain their first conference win against the Tigers.
NWG – Thomas Hennigan 1 run (Cody Creed kick)
NWG- Zach Tyler 27 run (Creed kick)
RAG- Jarious Drayton 19 run (kick failed)
NWG– Cameron Cloud 74 run (Creed kick)
RAG- Dominick Parker 31 pass from Eric Williams (pass failed)
NWG- Kyle Finnie 2 run (Creed kick)
NWG- Cloud 6 run (kick failed)
RAG- Drayton 16 run (run failed)
RAG 0 6 6 6 – 18
NWG 14 7 7 6 – 34
Thomas Hennigan: (6-9) 44yds, INT; 18 car, 88yds, TD
Zach Tyler: 8car 65yds, TD
Cameron Cloud: 6car 97yds, 2TD
Kyle Finnie: 6car 49yds, TD
Eric Williams: (14-25) 270yds, TD, 3INT; 10car, 55yds
Jarious Drayton: 17 car 115yds, 2TD
Dominick Parker: 7rec 155yds, TD