NAMS ends football season undefeated, win county title
North Augusta Middle School's trophy collection has an October addition, courtesy of Dalton Tolar, Jules Williams, Esai Guillen and a busload of football teammates who helped boost the Yellow Jackets to a 7-0 season and the Aiken County title.
The Jackets faced Schofield, the defending champs, at Aiken High School Oct. 24 and came away with a 14-7 win, withstanding a Schofield challenge in the fourth quarter.
Both teams had entered the game with records of 6-0. North Augusta's points came mostly by air, as Baron Radcliff tossed a pair of touchdown passes - the first to Drew Waltower and the second to Darius Copeland.
Baron followed up the first score with a successful two-point conversion. Schofield then scored and was threatening to score again, but the Jackets' Tavion Davis and Austin Jones stuffed a Schofield runner at the 1-yard line as time expired in the first half. Halftime had the Jackets up 8-7.
Baron's connection with Darius set the final margin, as the Jackets' aerial attempt at a conversion failed. Schofield and North Augusta exchanged fumbles late in the fourth quarter, providing plenty of chances for each team.
"I think we had more athletes than everyone else in the county, and we just had better coaches and better all-around players," said Baron, assessing the season.
The Jackets' coach, Justin Medlock, said, "I thought they worked very hard all year and practice and games, and they were a very coachable team - very responsive."
The Jackets' across-town rivals, Paul Knox, concluded its season with an Oct. 25 contest against Ridge Spring-Monetta - "a hard-fought game," in the words of the Patriots' coach, Tommy DeGennaro. The Patriots wound up on the short end of a 14-8 score and finished up their season at 2-4.