Albemarle shuts out South Davidson in first round of playoffs

Published 11:50 am Saturday, November 4, 2023

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In the 21 previous meetings between Albemarle and South Davidson, the Bulldogs have never lost on the field to the Wildcats.

Albemarle hosted South Davidson Friday night in the first round of the 1A state playoffs and made it 22 wins on the field in a 49-0 shutout.

The Bulldogs (6-5) are 20-2 lifetime against the Wildcats (4-7), with the two losses coming by forfeit.

Albemarle scored early and often in Friday’s win, leading 21-0 after one quarter. Kaine McLendon scored from three yards out. Later in the quarter quarterback Ander Artis found Ja’Zyion Geiger for a 67-yard touchdown pass. Jaylen Pinkney scored late in the first on a fumble return, taking the ball right out of a returner’s hands and taking it to the house.

The Bulldogs led 28-0 at halftime thanks to Malik Watkins’ 10-yard TD run with 3:15 left in the first half.

In the second half, Artis found Jason Wall for a 20-yard TD pass. Later, Watkins posted his second rushing TD of the game for a 42-0 lead and a running clock for the rest of the game.

Dre’ Davis threw a fourth-quarter touchdown pass to Christian Harris to round out the scoring.

Next up for No. 6 seed Albemarle is old playoff rival Thomasville Bulldogs. The two teams have played each other 41 times since 1962, with Thomasville having a 32-9 overall win advantage. However, the two teams are 3-3 against each other in the playoffs.

Thomasville has won the last three playoff games against Albemarle, and have an active four-game win streak against the royal blue-clad Bulldogs. Seven of the last eight games have gone to Thomasville, with 2017’s 13-6 win by Albemarle the only victory for the team in that time.

This season, Thomasville is 8-3 and is the No. 11 seed in the West. Thomasville advanced to the second round with a 49-6 win over No. 22 Andrews.

Kickoff is set for 7:30 p.m.

About Charles Curcio

Charles Curcio has served as the sports editor of the Stanly News & Press for more than 16 years and has written numerous news and feature storeis as well. He was awarded the NCHSAA Tim Stevens Media Representative of the Year and named CNHI Sports Editor of the Year in 2014. He has also won an award from Boone Newspapers, and has won four North Carolina Press Association awards.

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