NORTHWESTERN FOOTHILLS 2A ROUNDUP: Hefty Hibriten hammers Robinson, wins 17th straight game

Editor’s note: Game stories on Bunker Hill and Fred T. Foard will be posted separately on the website.

Hibriten High’s new football season started on Friday night much like its last one ended.

The Panthers — playing at Concord Robinson and beginning defense of their state 2AA title — rolled 41-7 to win their 17th straight game.

Hibriten went 16-0 last season and has now won 23 consecutive regular-season games since a loss to Patton in Game 10 of the 2015 season.


The Panthers (1-0) ran for 414 yards as their top returning rusher, McKinley Witherspoon, broke three runs – for 83, 17 and 11 yards – for scores. He had almost 130 yards rushing on eight carries. Marqwone Jones and Skylin Thomas combined for about 185 rushing yards for Hibriten.

Rich Williams debuted as head coach for Concord Robinson (0-1) while Clay Lewis, starting his ninth season as head coach at Hibriten, gained his 82nd career win (82-28).

The Panthers took only 64 seconds to score on Robinson.

“It’s the first game, but that’s a pretty good team we played,” Williams told The Concord Independent Tribune. “They looked like they were in Game 5 or Game 6, and we looked like we were in Week 1.”

Hibriten led 21-0 after the first quarter and 21-7 at halftime.

The Panthers took only 64 seconds to score on Robinson.

Hibriten’s season continues on Friday with a home game at 7:30 p.m. against West Caldwell (0-1).

The Panthers have 15 consecutive wins over West Caldwell, which also has not won at Hibriten since 2000 (Warriors 28, Panthers 25).

West Lincoln 53, Draughn 0

The visiting Rebels had more than 400 yards on offense and forced five turnovers to overwhelm the Wildcats in a season-opening game.

The Rebels recovered four fumbles and limited the Wildcats to fewer than 70 yards, starting head coach Tom Sain’s ninth season at West Lincoln with his 42nd career win.

The game was the debut of Chris Powell as head coach at Draughn.

West Lincoln’s returning quarterback, Seth Willis, threw for two scores and ran for two and returning running back Brendan Ikard added three TDs and led the Rebels’ rushing with more than 150 yards.

Willis’ first scoring run of 25 yards on a run came after West Lincoln recovered a Draughn fumble. He also threw TD passes in the second quarter to Ikard and Mason Huitt.

Junior quarterback Braxton Cox threw for 75 yards for the Wildcats.

West Lincoln, 4-8 last season, is idle on Friday and next plays on Aug. 31 at Cherryville.

Draughn, 2-9 last season, plays at Freedom (0-1) on Friday night at 7:30 p.m.

East Burke 42, West Caldwell 0

Twin brothers Brett and Chase Childers came up with interceptions as the Cavaliers (1-0) opened their season by pounding the Warriors in Lenoir.

Brett Childers returned his pick 41 yards for a touchdown and Chase Childers returned one of his for a TD and another inside the West Caldwell 5 as East Burke collected career win No. 13 for head coach Mark Buffamoyer.

Buffamoyer has three wins as Cavs head coach; his other 10 came as head coach at West Caldwell (2004-2007).

Hunter Huss 49, Patton 0

In the head-coaching debut of Jonathan Browning for Patton, the Huskies (1-0) threw for more than 300 yards and had 500 yards in total offense to win in Gastonia.

The Panthers (0-1) had three turnovers and fewer than 70 yards on offense.

Huss quarterback Zo Wallace threw for five scores and 307 yards. He hit wide receiver Tony Davis on scores of 81 and 78 yards early and Huss led 35-0 by halftime.

Jaheim Mullen, who played last season at Newton-Conover, caught two scoring passes for the Huskies.

Patton, coming off a nine-win season in 2017, faces R-S Central at Patton on Friday night at 7:30 p.m.

West Iredell 47, Hickory Hawks 6

West Iredell opened its fourth season under head coach Monte Simmons with a victory over the Hawks at Lenoir-Rhyne University.

Simmons is a former assistant coach at Hibriten who guided the Warriors (1-0) to a 5-7 record last year. He’s now won nine of his 35 games at West Iredell.

No other game details from Friday’s opener were available.

West Iredell’s next game is Friday at 7:30 p.m. at South Iredell.

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