“This win is unbelievable,” North Cobb coach Shane Queen said. “You can see how hungry our community and our fans are to come out an hour away from home and support these kids.”
Herrod rushed for 153 yards on 19 carries and Tyler Queen threw for 194 yards and a score for North Cobb (10-2), which will host Mill Creek in the quarterfinals next week.
After the defense stuffed Langston Hughes on a fourth-and-1 at the Warriors’ 47-yard line, Herrod gave North Cobb a double-digit lead for good. On the fifth play of the drive, Queen found Herrod wide open down the sideline for a 15-yard score and a 28-14 advantage with 6:02 left in the third quarter.
Then on the Warriors’ next drive, Herrod burst up the middle for a 38-yard sprint to the end zone, capping a 12-play, 90-yard march for a 35-14 cushion with 16 seconds left in the frame.
Following another Panthers’ punt, Herrod pushed his way into the end zone for a 3-yard TD with 9:22 remaining in the game to cap the scoring.
“We’ve known that (J’Vonte’s) got that capability,” Queen said. “He’s finally believing in himself and pushing himself. When he goes, we can go on offense. Just an amazing effort by him, the offensive line, Tom Clark and the coaching staff.”
Xavier Borishade, who finished with eight receptions for 109 yards, made amazing catch after amazing catch in the Warriors’ fifth straight win.
In the first half, it didn’t take long for North Cobb to build a 14-point lead. Herrod capped a 14-play, 77-yard no-huddle filled drive with a 3-yard touchdown run for a 7-0 edge with 8:32 left in the quarter. On the ensuing kickoff, the Warriors forced a fumble by Keion Davis and Nick Miller returned it to the end zone from 25 yards out 14 seconds later.
But Langston Hughes would cut the margin in half 3 minutes later, thanks to a 62-yard touchdown completion from Kenny Moxey to Davis.
Before the midway point of the second quarter, the Panthers would pull even when Moxey zipped a pass over the middle to Bingo Morton for a 35-yard score.
With 3:43 left in the half, North Cobb would regain the lead on a 2-yard run by Herrod for a 21-14 advantage.