RICHMOND—North Stafford senior football standout Javon Swinton knew exactly what to expect when the Wolverines visited powerhouse Highland Springs Friday night.
The Wolverines and Springers held a preseason scrimmage in each of Swinton’s first three years. He knew Highland Springs possessed a rare combination of supreme talent and coaching that has allowed the Springers to become four-time defending Class 5 state champions.
“A lot of teams you see like this, they have all the talent in the world but they’re not well-coached,” Swinton said. “Or they’re well-coached and might not have all the talent. They have it all.”
That completeness was on display to the dismay of the Wolverines and their fans in the final game at Victor Kreiter Stadium. Highland Springs held the Wolverines to 3 yards rushing and amassed 446 total yards behind a balanced offensive attack en route to a 54–13 nondistrict victory.
North Stafford (3–1) suffered its most lopsided defeat since a 50–7 setback to Liberty-Bealeton the second game of the 2008 season.
“I knew they were going to bring a different energy and that’s exactly what we saw tonight,” Swinton said. “We saw a team who is tough, well-coached and they came out and punched us in the mouth.”
It didn’t start off badly for the Wolverines. They recovered a fumble by Highland Springs quarterback Jamareeh Jones on the second play from scrimmage.
But it was all downhill from there.
North Stafford senior quarterback Jamir Boyd was intercepted by Damond Harmon two plays later, and the Springers (4–0) capitalized.
On fourth-and-6, Jones found a streaking LaQuan Veney down the middle of the field for a 44-yard touchdown.
The Springers, who have won 33 straight games since a 14–9 loss to Hermitage to open the 2017 season, added touchdown runs from Jones and backup quarterback Juwan Dent to take a 20–0 first-quarter lead.
The Wolverines closed the quarter with their highlight of the night, an 87-yard kickoff return for a score by Nick Woodard.
“We’ve practiced it a thousand times,” Woodard said of his big return. “I was behind my brother. I had no doubt I was going to return it.”
The momentum was short-lived for North Stafford. Highland Springs scored on Le’Quan Bassett’s 25-yard run and a 5-yard run by Jones to make it 33–6.
Jones punctuated the second quarter with a 20-yard scoring pass to Daytione Smith with 1 second left before intermission for a 40–6 advantage.
Jones finished with 181 passing yards and two touchdowns. He rushed for two more scores. North Stafford trailed 47–6 when it scored its lone offensive touchdown on a 13-yard pass from Boyd to Tevin White.
“I think they were exactly who we thought they were,” North Stafford head coach Neil Sullivan said of the Springers. “They’re a great team. We knew that. We knew they’re the best team in the state … We made some mistakes that you definitely can’t make when you’re playing a team of that caliber.”
North Stafford has a much-needed bye upcoming as Swinton will try to recover from a shoulder injury he suffered in the third quarter. The Wolverines are nursing other ailments, as well. They’ll be back in action Oct. 4 at unbeaten Mountain View.
HS—LaQuan Veney 44-yard pass from Jamareeh Jones (kick failed).
HS—Jones 2-yard run (Ahren Alsheskie kick).
HS—Juwan Dent 4-yard run (Alsheskie kick).
NS—Nick Woodard 87-yard kickoff return (kick failed).
HS—Le’Quan Bassett 25-yard run (Alsheskie kick).
HS—Jones 5-yard run (kick failed).
HS—Daytione Smith 20-yard pass from Jones (Alsheskie kick).
HS—Jordan Jackson 65-yard run (Alsheskie kick).
NS—Tevin White 13-yard pass from Jamir Boyd (Austin Owens kick).
HS—Gavin Crowe 25-yard pass from Khailyl Nasir (Alsheskie kick).
RUSHING: North Stafford—Tevin White 12-20; Channing Purvis 2-(minus-2); Monte Ferguson 1-(minus-3); Nick Woodard 1-(minus-5); Jamir Boyd 9-(minus-7). Highland Springs—Jordan Jackson 4-104, TD; Le’Quan Bassett 5-57, TD; Jamareeh Jones 4-35, 2 TDs; Pierre Gresham 4-16; Jadan Winston 1-11; Juwan Dent 1-4, TD; Jayden Thurman 1-3; Linwood Lancaster III 1-1; Khailyl Nasir 3-(minus-5).
PASSING: North Stafford—Jamir Boyd 14-26-1, 121 yards, TD. Highland Springs—Jones 7-8-0, 181 yards, 2 TDs; Nasir 2-5-0, 30 yards, TD; Dent 1-3-0, 9 yards.
RECEIVING: North Stafford—Holt Egan 4-48; Dino Jones 2-24; White 4-17, TD; Woodard 2-13; Nashawn Leftridge 1-11; Purvis 2-10; Ferguson 1-(minus-1). Highland Springs—Daytione Smith 2-64, TD; Dominic Keel Jr. 3-49; LaQuan Veney 1-44, TD; Kerry King Jr. 1-29; Gavin Crowe 1-25, TD; Michael Hodge 1-9; Jackson 1-0.