REYNOLDS – Reynolds running back Sean Jones left his shoulder pads in the locker room at halftime.
The Rockets didn’t need him for the final 24 minutes against Owen on Friday night. Plus, he needed to continue healing after missing the previous game after a hospital stay with colitis.
Jones and the rest of the Rockets felt better than fine after cruising to a 70-12 victory over the Warhorses.
“I cried a little last week because I couldn’t play,” Jones said. “I was a little sad that I didn’t play in the second half because I wanted to score four or five more touchdowns.”
Jones, a senior, had a good night on just four carries before halftime. He gained 66 yards on five carries including a 24-yard touchdown run in the first quarter and a 25-yard score in the second quarter.
“I didn’t make it look easy,” he said. “The O-line made it look easy. I just ran through the holes.”
Even with a running clock for the entire second half — after Reynolds built a 56-6 lead at the break — the Rockets (1-2) amassed 333 rushing yards on 30 carries. They had only 11 offensive snaps in the second half.
“It feels like a piano is off our back,” Reynolds coach Shane Laws said. “Things came together tonight and they were things we struggled with in the first two games.”
Those first two games were losses to 4-A power West Forsyth and to three-time defending 2-A state champion Shelby. Those defeats seem like they happened months ago after the dominating victory on Friday.
But it wasn’t perfect.
“Oh, I know we’ll find things to improve on when we watch the video,” Laws said. “It won’t be hard. The next thing is building on this win.”
Reynolds quarterback Nathan St. Onge accounted for four touchdowns — two rushing, one passing to Charlie Lehman and another to Talon James. Jones had his two scores before the half. Keyal Talbert, Darien Caldwell and Kaedin Robinson also had rushing touchdowns. And Conor Sullivan scored six when he covered a high punt-snap in the end zone during the third quarter. Senior kicker Ethan Blakey went 10-for-10 on extra points.
Owen receiver Tyler Sexton scored in the first quarter on a 13-yard pass from Kendrick Weaver, on a 77-yard streak from Weaver, and finished with seven receptions for 166 yards.
“We talked after the game about trying to finish the game, how to keep fighting and not give up,” Owen coach Nathan Padgett said. “Sometimes you have to handle adversity and how you do that says a lot about who you are.”