New Castle travelled to Richmond, and beat down the Red Devils 41-0 in the first round of sectional play. Richmond committed 23 penalties, including 14 personal fouls or unsportsmanlike conduct penalties. NC frustrated them all night, as they shut them out.
Richmond got the opening kick and on 4th down, Caleb Pierce broke through and made the QB throw it away for a turnover on downs. NC took the ball and moved 59 yards in 7 plays, with QB Niah Williamson hitting Luke Bumbalough on an 18 yard TD. Carter Brown hit the PAT and it was 7-0 NC. Richmond had to punt on their next possession and with 2 penalties on Richmond, NC got the ball on the 40 yard line. 5 plays later, Williamson hit Triston Chesher on a 15 yard TD and Brown was good again, making it 14-0. After another RHS punt, NC had the ball on their own 16 when Williamson hit Bumbalough on a 71 yard pass that took it down to the RHS 13. NC couldn’t score the TD, but Brown hit a 27 yard field goal and after 1 it was 17-0 NC.
In the 2nd quarter, Richmond possessed the ball 5 minutes, but their drive ended when Cahmdler Marcum intercepted a pass and returned it 37 yards. Another 2 RHS penalties added 30 more and NC was in business. 5 plays later, Brown hit a 31 yard field goal to make it 20-0. Richmond controlled it again, but had to punt after a D Ray Ford 15 yard tackles for loss on 3rd down. The punt was downed at the 1 yard line with 44 seconds left. Williamson hit Gage Burk on a 12 yard pass, Bumblough on a 34 yard gain, and then found Chesher on a tip drill that he hauled in at Richmond’s 1 yard line with 5 seconds left. After a false start penalty, Williamson was sacked and the half ended.
RHS got the onside kick to start the 3rd quarter, but Nicholas Grieser stopped RHS 1 yard short on 4th down. NC moved it but had to punt. RHS moved it also but had to punt. NC took over with 6:35 left in the quarter and kept the ball the rest of the quarter.
Starting the 4th, NC had the ball at the RHS 10 yard line, but turned it over on downs. RHS took possession and threw a swing pass when Mason Hardwick drilled the receiver, jarring the ball loose and Stephen Spears recovered, giving NC the ball at the Richmond 20. NC finally got back in the End Zone when Williamson hit Bumbalough for an 8 yard TD. IT was Bumbalough’s 26th receiving TD on the season, tying the state record. Brown added the PAT, and it was 27-0. RHS again couldn’t get a first down and NC took over. Williamson found Tytus Ragle on a 14 yard TD pass on the next drive that started off with Burk carrying the ball 5 times for 41 yards. Brown hit the PAT and it was 34-0. On the next play of the RHS possession, Spears stepped in front of an RHS pass, broke tackles, stiff armed a dude, and took it all the way to the RHS 1 yard line. Burk punched it in for his first TD of the season, and Mr Automatic Brown hit the PAT and the final was 41-0.
Offensively for NC, Williamson was 22-39 for 411 yards and 4 TDs. Bumbalough had 8 catches for 192 and 2 TDs. Chesher 6 for 120 yards and 1 TD, as he went over 1000 receiving yards on the season. Ragle had 3 catches for 27 yards and a TD, Grieser 2 for 36, and Burk 2 for 16. Burk rushed the ball 11 times for 53 yards and the TD.
NC’s defense stood on it’s head tonight and there were playmakers all over. Spears had 14 tackles, a fumble recovery and an INT. Dalton Clouse, Grieser, Colin Holcomb, and Dylan Beck all had 10 tackles. Clouse had 3 tackles for loss and Grieser 4 passes defended. Chandler Marcum had 8 tackles and the big INT that stopped an RHS drive. Dalton Hicks, Caleb Pierce, and D Ray Ford all had huge tackles for loss. It was a great defensive effort.
NC moves to 6-4 and secures their first guaranteed winning season since 1984. We aren’t done yet. The boys host Mooresville next week, who beat Connersville 61-13 in their first sectional game. The game is at 7 PM and is at Neal Field. NC had twice as many fans as RHS did as we showed up in force. See everyone next Friday as we continue our March to a sectional championship.