CHARLOTTE — Ardrey Kell High dominated the second half against Weddington on Friday night, outscoring the Warriors, 24-0, over the game’s final two quarters to claim a 38-21 home victory over a the Warriors, who have won three state titles in the past five years.
The loss is Weddington’s first in the regular season since a 20-0 defeat at Charlotte Catholic on Sept. 28, 2018. The Warriors (3-1) had won 25 straight regular season games before Friday’s loss to the Knights (3-0).
“(Ardrey Kell) made adjustments and we didn’t,” Weddington coach Andy Capone said. “It starts with me. I told the team ... “We got out-coached, and I’ll be the first one to take the blame.’ I think our mentality as a team, being up 14-0, it was the first time we’d done that all year. We just let our foot off the gas. They made adjustments, we didn’t, and that’s something we’ll have to better at moving forward ... We definitely weren’t happy with how we finished that game.”
Weddington led by two scores early on thanks to a touchdown run by Kyle Parsons and a touchdown pass from senior quarterback Grady Brosterhous to fellow senior Landyn Backey. The Warriors could have possibly led by more, as their first drive — which started after Ardrey Kell fumbled the opening kickoff — ended in a missed field goal.
Ardrey Kell tied the game at 14-14 just before the half, but the Warriors weren’t done scoring yet. With less than 10 seconds left and the ball at its own 45-yard line, Weddington scored on a 55-yard catch and run by Parsons, a Wofford College commit who accounted for 148 total yards and two touchdowns Friday. It allowed WHS to take a 21-14 lead into the locker room.
The final two quarters belonged to Ardrey Kell. The Knights tied the game on a 55-yard run by running back Beylor Morgan early in the third quarter, and less than a minute later they took the lead on a 21-yard fumble return for a touchdown.
Weddington turned the ball over three times in the second half and gained just over 100 yards of offense across the third and fourth quarters. Outside of Parsons, the Warriors ran for 71 yards on 21 carries (3.4 ypc).
“Kyle’s continuing to run the ball hard and we’re getting a little better on the line each week,” Capone said. “We need to continue to improve, and I have to do a better job of scheming us into better box counts and better situations. That’s something that our staff is going to look at this week and doing a better job for us of putting them in better situations. The line works extremely hard. We’re getting to where we’re a little bit better each week. We hope by conference, they’ll have grown up and really matured, but it’s never a finished product.”
Weddington has an open date in Week 5 before returning to action Sept. 24 against Olympic. WHS will begin Southern Carolina Conference play Oct. 1 on the road against Piedmont.
Capone said his team has work to do before league play.
“We’re a young team, but that’s no excuse anymore,” Capone said. “We’re halfway through the season. We just have to grow up. We have to grow up. That’s something we told our kids on Friday. We can’t be happy with a 14-point lead. We have to approach every game like we’re tied at half or down at half. If we took that same mentality (against Ardrey Kell), I think we’re sitting here with a different outcome, but that’s something we’ll have to do to get better. We’re not in panic mode. We’re still 3-1 and we’re getting ready for a tough conference stretch. We’re going to take this week to make sure we get that done.”
Ardrey Kell 38, Weddington 21
AK — 38
W — 21
W: Kyle Parsons 4 run (Matthew Moonan kick)
W: Landyn Backey 6 pass from Grady Brosterhous (Moonan kick)
AK: Beylor Morgan 34 pass from Jack Curtis (Alex Chilcott kick)
AK: Jalen Toye-Ellis 14 pass from Curtis (Chilcott kick)
W: Parsons 56 pass from Brosterhous (Moonan kick)
AK: Morgan 55 run (Chilcott kick)
AK: Kevin Tarpley 21 fumble return (Chilcott kick)
AK: Chlcott 41-yard field goal
Passing — W: Brosterhous 18-37-1 178
Rushing — W: Parsons 15-72, Brosterhous 14-55, Dalen Gordon 6-19, Backey 1-(-3)
Receiving — W: Backey 6-44, Parsons 4-76, Ian McDermaid 4-34, Griffin Reimer 2-16, Brooks Mauk 1-1