ROCKINGHAM — All three of the Southeastern Conference’s undefeated teams needed to mount a comeback Friday night in order to keep their records unblemished.
Richmond Senior rallied from a 14-point first-quarter deficit to pull out a 41-33 win at home over Vance. Scotland trailed Marlboro County (S.C.) by four in the fourth quarter before posting a 21-14 road victory. Pinecrest fell behind by 18 points in the first half at Beddingfield, then scored 28 unanswered points en route to a 37-25 win.
The other three schools in the SEC weren’t as successful. Purnell Swett lost at Hoggard, while Hoke County and Lumberton remained winless. The Bucks fell to Seventy-First in Raz Autry Stadium and the Pirates dropped their home opener to South View.
Scotland 21, Marlboro County (S.C.) 14
BENNETTSVILLE, S.C. — When in crunch time and trailing the opposition, Scotland coach Richard Bailey knows the player he wants to have the ball — Jaylend Ratliffe.
The junior quarterback responded. Ratliffe scored the game-winner on a 3-yard run up the middle of the Marlboro County defense as Scotland (3-0) claimed a 21-14 win.
Ratliffe finished the contest with 29 rushes for 190 yards and two touchdowns. Scotland’s other points came on two field goals by Ben Utter.
“He’s the most reliable guy we have and he just wills us to victory,” Bailey said to the Laurinburg Exchange. “I hate to run him that many times, but we were down and playing with two backups on the offensive line.”
Pinecrest 37, Beddingfield 25
WILSON — Beddingfield jumped out to an 18-0 lead in the opening moments of the second quarter and appeared set to upset Pinecrest.
The Patriots responded by scoring the game’s next 28 points to rally for a 37-25 victory. It was the third road win in as many weeks for Pinecrest (3-0).
Troy Roper sparked the comeback recording a 37-yard run and a 54-yard reception for touchdowns. Christian Ledbetter added his sixth rushing score of the season in the win. Ledbetter also threw for another three touchdowns.
“We got a WU tonight — a ‘win ugly,’” Pinecrest coach Chris Metzger said to The Pilot. “I think it was a little bit of a situation tonight where our depth helped us. We were hoping to wear them down and after some adversity, our kids responded.”
Hoggard 45, Purnell Swett 14
WILMINGTON — Four first-half turnovers doomed Purnell Swett’s chances of knocking off Hoggard on the road.
The Vikings took advantage of the miscues and jumped out to a 17-point first-quarter advantage to cruise to a 45-14 win.
Hoggard coach Scott Braswell had the field renamed in his honor before the contest.
Braswell alternated Austin Schoenleber and Xavier Johnson at quarterback throughout the game. Schoenleber was 5 of 9 for 62 yards and added another 30 on the ground. Johnson went 4-for-8 for 92 yards.
Quarterback Thriston Lowery finished the game 10 of 15 for 127 yards for Purnell Swett (1-2).
“Four of their six touchdowns were gifts,” Purnell Swett coach Mark Heil said to The Robesonian. “The two in the second half were from turnovers way down in our end of the zone. We just gave them four easy scores. I thought our defense played well except for two drives, but we just gave up four easy touchdowns.”
South View 42, Lumberton 16
LUMBERTON — Lumberton’s is still searching to find its wings in its new “Air Raid” offense.
The Pirates were grounded again in Week 3, this time by South View in a 42-16 loss.
After trailing by 11, Lumberton sliced the deficit to 21-16 on Demitri Sheridan’s 18-yard interception return for a touchdown in the third quarter. It was the closest the Pirates (0-3) would get the rest of the way.
Lumberton quarterback Will Everette passed for 186 yards, but was intercepted three times in the second half, including one pick-six. South View used the running of Jeremy Cox to build a 21-10 halftime lead. Cox scored twice in the opening 24 minutes on runs of 52 and 20 yards.
“We’re getting there,” Lumberton coach Joe Salas said to The Robesonian. “We’re one step closer to where we want to be but we’ve got to go through the mud to get to the sunshine.”
Seventy-First 47, Hoke County 27
RAEFORD — After the two schools traded touchdowns on its opening possession of the contest, Seventy-First then took charge.
The Falcons scored three times on plays of more than 30 yards in the second quarter to pull away for a 47-27 victory over the winless Bucks.
Jamel Jolliffe connected with Brandon Harvey and Terrence Semple on long touchdown passes as Seventy-First built a 25-13 halftime lead. The Falcons’ other score came on a 30-yard fumble return by Thenadie Simmons.
The lone bright spot for Hoke was on special teams. Brandon Smith had an 81-yard kickoff return for a touchdown and returned another kick 73 yards to set up a 12-yard scoring run by Jacob Rushing.
— Sports editor Shawn Stinson can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 14, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @scgolfer.