Sunday 19 May 2019

Rosewood Football Ready For Next Playoff Challenge (AUDIO)

By ANDREW STEVENS — Prior to the start of the season, the word “expectations” was one that Rosewood head coach Robert Britt used frequently.

Internally, Britt and his coaching staff believed this season could be a special one for the Eagles. Now, Rosewood finds itself one win away from playing for a state championship for the first time since 1991.

The Eagles (9-2) visit Pamlico County (12-1) tonight in the North Carolina High School Athletic Association 1-A East Finals. The game can be heard on 105.7 FM and 730 AM WFMC, starting with the pre-game show at 7 p.m. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

“We knew coming into the season that we had a lot of talent,” Britt said. We had a bunch of kids that had field experience. For our seniors it’s just rewarding to see them reap the rewards of hard work and dedication. The underclassmen, once you get there you want to stay there. I’m sure they’re going to work hard in the offseason to try to get back there next year.”

Last Friday, Rosewood upset top-seed Northampton County 28-14 and held a Jaguars’ offense that had averaged 41 points a game to just one offensive touchdown.

The Eagles are now tasked with slowing down a Pamlico County offense that averages 45 points and 360 rushing yards per game. The Hurricanes have rushed for 4,681 yards and 69 touchdowns. Sophomores Sayvonne Tutt and William Lovick have combined to rush for 2,698 yards and 33 touchdowns.

Opponents are averaging just 14 points a game against the Eagles’ defense. Rosewood has given up more than 14 points just three times this season.

“Our kids have a lot of confidence right now,” Britt said. “We’re playing for the Eastern championship. We’re flying to the ball. We’re flying around at practice. We played a very good number one seed Northampton team last week. We know we’re getting ready to play a very good, number two seed Pamlico. We feel like we can beat anybody. We’ve worked hard to get better at defending the option scheme. I think one thing that’s helping us right now is we’ve got some team speed on that side of the ball.”

The Eagles’ offense has had success with rotating running backs Mike Reid and Dhimani Fenty. Reid and Fenty combined to rush for 204 yards and three touchdowns against Northampton County, and collectively they’ve compiled 2,125 yards and 34 touchdowns.

Rosewood’s offense averages 35 points a game.

“You see how one player is doing and you know that in today’s football it’s really hard for one back to carry the load all the time,” Britt said. “We know after about two series in a row it’s time to bring the other horse in and let him get his carries. They’re both big boys and they both present a challenge for the other team to try to bring down.”

Pamlico County is in the state semifinals for the first time since 2004. The Hurricanes have never played for a state championship. The winner of tonight’s game faces either Murphy (11-1) or Robbinsville (11-2) next weekend in the 1-A state championship.

Rosewood head coach Robert Britt appeared on the Jeff Farrow Morning Show on Goldsboro’s Greatest Hits 1150 and 983 Thursday.  You can hear the full interview below.



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