Northwood football team edges out Seaforth, 12-7 – The Chatham News + Record

  • September 10, 2022

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PITTSBORO The Northwood football team inched past Seaforth, 12-7, on Friday night at home in what was a tighter game than many would have expected. The Hawks (0-4) managed to lead for most of the night, but they couldn’t hold off the Chargers (2-2) in the end. 
The Hawks started their first possession looking to score their first points of the season after losing by a combined margin of 128-0 in Weeks 1-3. Seaforth leaned on Anthony Vesce early on, and the junior established himself as a physical runner outside the hashes from the start.
After Vesce ignited the drive with a 24-yard scamper, the Hawks were in business. Moments later, junior wide receiver John Becker hauled in a 35-yard touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback Joshua Brown to give Seaforth its first-ever lead as a varsity program.
With the early momentum on its side, Seaforth took a gamble on the ensuing kickoff and attempted an onside kick. The risk paid off for the Hawks, who recovered the ball, but the Chargers defense stood its ground and forced Brown to sling three consecutive incomplete passes, stalling Seaforth’s second drive. 
That said, arguably the biggest play of the first half came from Northwood’s special teams unit.
With the Hawks still leading by seven, the Chargers earned prime field position with a blocked punt. A few plays later, Northwood senior quarterback Will Smith found freshman Cam Fowler in the back corner of the end zone to get Northwood on the board. The extra point was missed wide left, however, meaning Seaforth still held a one-point advantage heading into the break.
The second half mirrored the same offensive grudge match seen over the first two quarters, with neither squad engineering fruitful drives. But ultimately Northwood seized momentum thanks to a huge play from its defense.
With the Hawks facing 4th-and-long late in the third quarter, Brown evaded the initial pressure put on by the Chargers and tried to pick up a first down through the air. Instead, the pass was intercepted by Northwood senior linebacker Cliff Davis, who tip-toed down the sideline to return the ball 54 yards for a touchdown
Davis’ game-changing interception was the final scoring play of the game, as Seaforth couldn’t capitalize on its final drive after taking over on its own 20-yard line with three minutes left. Still, the narrow margin of defeat had to be an encouraging sign for the Hawks, who had lost their previous three games by an average of over 40 points per game.
Seaforth will look to capitalize on this momentum this Friday as it hosts Jordan-Matthews, which is also 0-4 after a 60-7 loss to Trinity in Week 4. Northwood, meanwhile, will try to get back above .500 on Friday when it hosts Williams (2-2).
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