For the first time in its six-year football history, the Mentorship Academy Sharks can say they are on a varsity winning streak.
Fresh off of last week’s win over Istrouma, Mentorship dismantled North Central 60-0 Thursday night at Memorial Stadium, giving them wins in back-to-back games for the first time.
“For our school and our program, it is a big deal,” Mentorship coach Keith Woods said of the winning streak. “It gives these guys the incentive to keep pushing forward, and it shows that their hard work has paid off”
The game was delayed more than 90 minutes by rain/lightning. The defense for Mentorship (2-1) provided plenty of fireworks, scoring four times. The Sharks held North Central (0-3) to 87 total yards, while forcing five turnovers.
“The defense came out playing aggressive,” Woods said. “We kept them behind the chains and were able to take advantage of it with turnovers”
Quarterback Christian Miles, who threw for 183 yards and two scores, led the offense.
“He started off a little shaky, but he made better reads. I am proud of him. He is a sophomore, playing his first year of varsity ball. He has work to do, but he did well”
The Sharks grabbed the lead 90 seconds into the game when Miles found Da’shun Hugley for a 45-yard score. A two-point conversion pass from Miles to Jonathan Harris gave the Sharks an 8-0 lead.
After the teams traded possessions for most of the first quarter, the Mentorship defense scored the first of its four touchdowns.
North Central quarterback Aaron Johnson threw a pass over the middle that was deflected twice and ended up in the hands of Sharks defensive back Traylyn Dotson, who raced past the Hurricanes offense for a 48-yard touchdown return. The two-point conversion failed, but the Sharks had a 14-0 lead.
Mentorship scored three touchdowns in a span of 61 seconds in the second quarter. Miles found Hugley for another touchdown with 8:46 remaining in the half, this time from 29 yards out to make the score 20-0.
The defense picked up the next two scores, both on fumble returns. First, Jacoby Durrant scored from 15 yards out and then Zyon Mims from 55 yards away. The Sharks' lead ballooned to 34-0 with 7:46 left in the first half. McCray scored from 2 yards out four minutes later to give Mentorship a 40-0 lead at halftime.
Durrant added another fumble return for a touchdown early in the third quarter — a 56 yard play — that was sweet redemption. Durrant was taken to the hospital late in the win over Istrouma last week with a neck injury, but it was not serious.
Mentorship lost its first 43 games before getting a win in the season finale last year vs. Glen Oaks. Now, they have won three of the past four.
“This win helps everybody with morale around the school,” Woods said. “The atmosphere is changing, and football has a lot to do with that. I’m happy for the school, our community, and these kids”