TAMPA — Maybe Newsome running back Clint Carnell summed it up best.
“We just came out,” he said, “and punched them in the mouth.”
The Wolves connected solidly, mauling district champ Gaither 52-7 Friday night on the Cowboys’ home field in the Class 7A region quarterfinals.
“No, I’m not surprised,” Newsome coach Ken Hiscock said. “We came out, played well and the scoreboard showed it.”
Newsome (7-4) ran its wing-T offense to perfection, gouging huge holes in the Gaither (8-3) defense. The Wolves rolled up 532 yards of offense, 510 on the ground.
“You have to give all the credit to our offensive line,” Carnell said. “We came in here with so much confidence.”
Carnell (10 carries, 89 yards and a touchdown) was one of four Wolves to gain at least 73 yards rushing. Quarterback Will Worth had 181 yards on 14 carries and ran for two scores, including a 57-yard TD. Tyler Dufrene (56-yard TD) ran for 73 yards, and John Hendricks gained 106 before leaving just before halftime with an injury.
Newsome’s defense was equally as impressive, holding Gaither to 138 total yards, with 37 of those coming on a Jalen Cochran run. Newsome also had a sack and a pair of interceptions, including one returned 40 yards for a TD by Ricardo Rodriguez.
Newsome advances to play Durant next week. The district champ Cougars defeated the runnerup Wolves 38-28 on Oct. 18, a game in which Durant forced four turnovers.
“They’re a tough team,” Hiscock said. “You can’t have the turnovers we did last time and expect to beat them.”