In 2011, the Midway Raiders celebrated a great homecoming victory over Pender. In 2012, the homecoming game happened to be against the second ranked 1A school in the state. To complicate the challenge, the Raiders lost quarterback Taylor Calcutt with 10:57 remaining in the second quarter. The final score was 30-0 in favor of the visitors.
After a fruitless first possession for the Raiders, the James Tigers claimed possession at their own 16-yard line. Marcelias Sutton ran 84 yards at the eight-minute mark for Kenan’s first score of the night. The PAT failed. Tigers led 6-0.
The Raiders ensuing possession showed promise. Following pass completions by Calcutt to Troy Spell and Aaron Thurman, the home team found itself at first and 10 on the Tiger 20-yard line. They proceeded to the 10 and were knocking on the door. The turnover bug that has plagued the Raiders in recent games, bit suddenly in the end zone in the form of an interception by Ja’Quan Williams and a long pick six. He took it 101 yards and a 13-0 lead for the visitors with 3:50 left in the opening frame. The PAT was kicked by Max Hernandez.
The Raiders could get nothing going on the next possession, but a roughing the kicker penalty gave them new life. Moments later, quarterback Calcutt would leave the game due to an injury. He would not return to the game and was transported to Sampson Regional Medical Center.
Following a Raider punt, the Tigers moved the ball into field goal position. Hernandez nailed one from 38 yards, giving James Kenan a 16-0 lead. And then, with 31 seconds left in the half, Tiger quarterback Gregory Washington connected with Sutton for a 29-yard touchdown play and a 23-0 lead.
At halftime, Kimmy Morales was named 2012 Midway Homecoming Queen.
The Tigers pounced on the Raiders quickly to start the second half. Less than two minutes into the third period, Williams ran 59 yards for another JK touchdown. 30-0 would be the final score.
The Raiders courted the end zone one more time. Late in the final period, Midway had the ball on the Tiger 16-yard line, but could not convert on 4th and inches.
Thurman was once again the leading rusher for the Raiders. He picked up 68 yards on 21 carries. Atlantis Warren rushed 8 times for 37 yards. Sutton carried 8 times for the Tigers for 149 yards.
Midway rushed for a total of 77 yards. James Kenan responded with 272.
Calcutt connected on 2 of 3 attempts before going out. He threw 1 interception. His replacement was Jansen Wrench.
Thurman was also the leading receiver with 1 catch for 36 yards.
“That defensive line was something else,” remarked Raider head coach Tommy Sloan. “We couldn’t slow them down. We moved the ball a little bit, but they had a lot of penalties.” As for the injury to Calcutt, Sloan added,“ I’m pretty sure he’s got a concussion.”
The Raiders fall to 4-5 overall, and 1-4 in conference play. The Tigers improve to 8-0. Midway will travel to Union next week.