Barons top Dukes, 22-0

Published 8:42 pm Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Cumberland County High School’s varsity football team kept its Senior Night game competitive Monday night against Bluestone High School, but the visiting Barons were able to add some cushion to their halftime lead and return home with a 22-0 victory.

While the Dukes have endured some significant blowouts this year, Monday’s game was distinct in that Cumberland was still in the game in the second half. Bluestone led 15-0 at halftime.

“Defensively, I think we played well,” Dukes Head Coach Jamaal Artis said, adding that this has been a recent trend for his squad. “We just had one or two blown coverages, and that was the difference in the game.”

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Cumberland struggled mightily, however, on the offensive side of the ball.

“It was hard running the ball,” Artis said. “We were without two of our starting offensive linemen — one’s serving a suspension, and one was out with concussion protocol. So, we kind of had our hands tied, but we knew going in we were going to be without those two guys, so we’re not making any excuses.”

Defense is where the coach found some standouts, though.

“Vince Harris and Ziahir Berry had excellent games at linebacker, and the two defensive ends, for just picking up the spot, Isaiah Carter and K.J. Copeland did a wonderful job,” Artis said. “I think this is our best group, defensively, as far as putting the most athletic kids on the field, regardless of position.”

Copeland and Carter, both seniors, each had  fumble recoveries, and Berry, also a senior, had an interception.

On offense, the biggest play of the night for the Dukes came when sophomore quarterback Ramir Parker connected with senior wide receiver Noah Bland on an approximately 65-yard catch-and-run, but the Dukes were not able to turn it into points.

“We didn’t have many positive yards all night,” Artis said.

The Dukes (0-9) will close out their regular season schedule on Friday at 7 p.m. when they visit Randolph-Henry High School (0-9).

Then Cumberland will have at least one playoff game.

“We’re in Region B, and everyone in Region B goes to the playoffs,” Artis said.