MARS HILL SCORES 3 LATE TD'S TO EDGE NORTH GREENVILLE 38-28
Saturday, September 24, 2011
MARS HILL SCORES 3 LATE TD'S TO EDGE NORTH GREENVILLE 38-28
Mars Hill, NC –  Jonas Randolph rushed for 220 yards and Mars Hill (3-1) scored 20 unanswered points late in the game to ease past North Greenville (2-2) 38-28 at the Ammons Family Athletic Center. 
The Crusaders led 28-18 late in the third quarter after Jamarius Robinson picked off a Jon Richt pass and took it in for a touchdown with 5:05 left in the third quarter.  Mars Hill rebounded behind Richt and Randolph.

Teryan Rucker led NGU with his second consecutive 100 yard game with 112 yards on 16 carries and a touchdown, and Idris Anderson added 76 and a touchdown.  Senior quarterback Willy Korn went 12-25 for 129 yards.  

Mars Hill started quickly as they took the opening drive drive for a touchdown when Randolph dashed in for touchdown from 15 yards out with 10:21 left.  On the extra point, senior Tyran Melvin blocked the kick and Isaiah Johnson picked it up and went 95 yards for the two point conversion for the Crusaders. That made it 6-2.

On NGU’s next possession, the Crusaders used a 48 yard carry by Rucker to the five yard that set up his five yard spinning run into the end zone.  Justin Gravely missed the extra point, and that put NGU ahead 8-6 with 4:36 left in the first period.

With 25 seconds left in the first quarter, Korn bobbled a snap and the ball squirted free and Michael Robinson scooped up the ball and raced 28 yards in for a Mars Hill touchdown.  Melvin once again blocked the extra point, which made it 12-8 Mars Hill.

The NGU defense held on a fourth down play at the North Greenville 31, and the Crusaders responded with a solid 69 yard drive capped by Idris Anderson’s touchdown from 16 yards out with 7:01 left in the first half.  Gravely’s extra point gave NGU its first lead of the afternoon at 15-12 with 7:01 left.

NGU started a drive at their own two with 4:30 left, but Mars Hill forced a punt and the Lions had the ball at own 48 with two minutes left.  A roughing the passer penalty negated an interception by Jamarius Robinson with 1:55 left and Richt then hit Akeem Ferguson for a Lion touchdown.  Richt’s pass on the ensuing two point conversion was bobbled, and the Lions led 18-15 at the half.

North Greenville took kickoff and drove to the 23 yard line and Gravely drilled a field goal with no time left to tie it 18-18 at halftime.

On NGU’s first drive of the second half, Korn drove the Crusaders to the 25 yard line and Gravely added another field goal to put NGU up 21-18 with 8:44 left in the third.  The drive was 10 plays and 75 yards that seemed to give NGU the momemtum.  

On Mars Hill’s next series, senior cornerback Jamarius Robinson picked off a Jon Richt pass on second and long and had clear sailing in to the end zone for a Crusader touchdown.  Gravely’s extra point made is 27-18 with 5:05 left in the third.

Mars Hill bounced right back when Richt hit Joshua Young on a touchdown pass with 1:11 left.  The extra point made it 28-25 NGU at the end of the third quarter.

Start of the fourth, Mars Hill stopped Korn on a third down play and the Crusaders punted deep int their own territory.  Jacob Buckley responded with a 58 yard punt and the Lions took over at the 23 yard line.

The key play of the game was when Mars Hill punter B.J. Richmond faked a punt and a 10 yard gain gave the Lions a first down.  Richt and Randolph then took control of the game.  Richt hit Dimitri Holmes for a 17 yard touchdown pass with 10:15 left that put Mars Hill up 31-28.  The extra point was no good.

Randolph added another touchdown from 24 yards out with 8:53 left that put the game out of reach at 38-28.  That made 20 unanswered points by the Lions late in the second half.
North Greenville mounted a serious drive late after Nathan Batchelor intercepted Richt.  Korn drove the Crusadders to the Mars Hill 10 yard line, but his pass to Sean Wright at the 10 yard line went in and out of his hands and popped into the hands of Robert Green for the interception that ended the game.

The Crusaders will return home next Saturday when they host South Atlantic Conference leader Lenoir Rhyne at 7:00 p.m. at Younts Stadium.  That game will be broadcast live by WMYA, My 40 television out of Asheville, NC.