Sussex Central stays unbeaten with 14-6 win over cross-town rival

GEORGETOWN — With the help of timely defensive stops and turnovers, Sussex Central stayed undefeated with a 14-6 football win over cross-town rival Sussex Tech Friday night.

Junior quarterback Isaac Barnes and his 11-yard rushing touchdown on the game’s opening drive, and a 64-yard touchdown run from running back Zion Reed was all the offense needed for Central to move to 5-0 on the season.

The win extends Central’s regular-season winning streak to eight games, with the team’s last loss dating back to Oct. 22 of last season against Smyrna – Central’s opponent next Friday night.

“We worked hard all week setting up our game plan,” said junior receiver and safety Isaiah Barnes. “The defense really came to play tonight.”

“I thought Tech matched us well,” said head coach John Wells. “Big line, spreading people out, they can wear really you out. We’re not big up front, we’re just tough. We hang our hat on being tough. We thought our defense would be what we lean on in games like this one.”

Central’s defense forced a pair of turnovers on downs, picked off two Tech passes and recovered a fumble at their own one-yard line in the eight-point win.

After the initial opening-drive touchdown for Central, Tech bounced back and had an answer on their second drive of the game.

Tech’s junior running back Michael Norsworthy punched the ball in from one yard out. The failed two-point conversion allowed Central to maintain the 7-6 lead in the second quarter.

Leading 7-6 at halftime, Central’s defense forced an early third quarter fumble at their own one-yard line.

Junior Zion Reed recovered the fumble and a couple of plays later converted the turnover into points. Reed’s 64-yard touchdown broke the game open and handed Central the 14-6 advantage.

“It felt good, but I couldn’t have done it without my offensive line blocking for me hard,” Reed said of his touchdown run. “I saw the hole, and once I got to the second level I cut back and I just found the end zone.”

With the eight-point lead, the defense took care of the rest.

With 11:04 to play in the game, Sussex Central’s defense forced another turnover on downs deep inside their own territory.

An Isaiah Barnes interception in the end zone with 2:05 to spare sealed the victory for the Golden Knights.

“It felt great to put the game away and be a leader for my team,” Barnes said.

With defending state champion Smyrna next up for the Golden Knights, Isaac Barnes knows his team will need to stay focused and not get ahead of themselves.

“When we come out Monday, we’re 0-0. That’s how it is. We’re 0-0 and working to get ready for our next opponent,” he said.

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