It took nearly three quarters, but North County's run-and-shoot offense finally got untracked, as the Knights rallied for a 22-21 victory over host Oakland Mills in a non-league football game yesterday.
Sophomore quarterback Reggie Moore threw touchdown passes of 75 and 12 yards to Troy Ross, as the Knights took advantage of two Oakland Mills fumbles in the season opener for both teams.
North County, a school which opened last fall, won for the ninth time in its 11-game history. But on a day when nothing came easily for either side, the Knights squandered an early 10-0 lead and fell behind 21-10 before regrouping behind a revitalized offensive line.
"We got the OL together and said they had to give him [Moore] some time," said North County coach Chuck Markiewicz, who called timeout in the third quarter to take the field and chide his team. That was after Moore -- in his first varsity start -- had been hounded by Oakland Mills' pass rush led by Justin Wethington, Leonard Boyd, Eric Goodwin, Adam Seidman and Wade McHargue.
"A couple of times I did get my bell rung; I got hit," said Moore, who completed 12 of 22 passes for 152 yards and the two touchdowns. He was intercepted once.
"Our line was a little shook up in the beginning, but came back in the second half -- and that's when it counts," Moore said. "I was a little nervous, too. It was my first start. But the defense came through and saved me."
Two Oakland Mills mistakes helped, too.
Holding a 21-10 lead, the Scorpions fumbled the ball away while faking a field goal attempt. One play later, Moore fired to Ross deep over the middle. Ross had a step on Akil Benjamin -- who had already scored on both offense and defense -- made the catch at Oakland Mills' 45 and raced to the end zone.