The Lenoir-Rhyne Football Team (10-1, 7-0) won its 10th consecutive game with a 48-15 triumph over Catawba (6-5, 3-4) in a South Atlantic Conference contest
and regular season finale Saturday afternoon at Shuford Stadium.
L-R, ranked No. 14 in NCAA Division II, rushed for 445 yards on the day while senior halfback Graham Duncan (Gainesville, Ga.) scored on a pair of 10-yard touchdown runs in the victory. Lenoir-Rhyne, who had already wrapped up its third straight conference championship, finished with 503 yards of total offense in defeating Catawba for the fifth straight year.
L-R scored on the opening drive capped off by a six-yard touchdown run from sophomore quarterback Teverrius Jones (Washington, Ga.) and never trailed in the contest. Catawba responded when quarterback Mike Sheehan (Wilmington, N.C.) hit Carlos Tarrats (Jacksonville, Fla.) for a 74-yard touchdown reception on the ensuing drive but Lenoir-Rhyne took control from there with the next 13 points.
Lenoir-Rhyne held a 20-9 advantage at halftime before breaking the game open in the third quarter thanks to consecutive touchdown runs by Duncan. L-R sophomore wide receiver Greyson Wells (West Jefferson, N.C.) added a 58-yard touchdown reception and the Bears' defense limited the Indians to just 239 yards of total offense.
Duncan finished with 73 yards on the ground while junior fullback Isaiah Whitaker (Salisbury, N.C.) led all rushers with 84 yards as the Bears matched their longest winning streak since winning 10 in a row over the 1967 and 1968 seasons. Catawba, which saw its three-game winning streak snapped, was led by Jason Taylor (Bahama, N.C.) and Jacob Hanes (Charlotte, N.C.) with 13 tackles each.
Lenoir-Rhyne now awaits a berth to the NCAA Division II Playoffs for the second straight year. The pairings for the national tournament will be released on Sunday at 5:00 p.m. The Bears are the top-ranked team in Super Region II while the top six schools in the regional poll earn a bid to the postseason.
NOTES: Greyson Wells, who played at Ashe County High School, is L-R's leading receiver. Wells has 15 catches for 291 yards and four TDs.
Photo Couirtesy: Greyson Wells, L-R Athletics