Belleview vs North Marion recap

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Posted September 10, 2022 | By Allen Barney
Allen@ocalagazette.com

It was a battle between the remaining two undefeated teams in Marion County on Friday night at Stan Toole Memorial Stadium as the North Marion Colts hosted the Belleview Rattlers.

The hype surrounding the matchup was justified and the game lived up to billing. The Colts drew first blood when senior linebacker Jaleighk Patterson returned a fumble for a touchdown with eight minutes left in the first quarter.

The Colts defense has scored a touchdown in each of the first three games to start the season and head coach Greg Carr is cognizant of the effect the defense has on his team.

“Just going out and trying to do things to spark the team. It’s crazy because it hasn’t been one particular person, we had a linebacker score tonight and we’ve also had a touchdown from the defensive line as well. So, all three phases are amazing to see, hats off to my defensive coordinator and defensive coaches.,” he said.

He added, “Coach G, Coach Carr, Coach Williams, Coach Beard, all of those guys have been locked in and helping guys get better each and every day.”

Colts senior wide receiver Elija Walton nabbed his first touchdown reception of the night with three minutes left to go in the first quarter to give the Colts a 14-0 lead. The Rattlers answered with a 37-yard field goal from senior Aiden Kaczmarski to make it 14-3.

Walton hauled in his second touchdown of the first half and the Rattlers would get a second field goal out of Kaczmarski to bring the deficit to 20-6 at halftime.

“Our kicker has been phenomenal, he averaged over 40 yards a punt, had two field goals, two touchbacks and he gave us great field position a bunch of times to help the defense.,” Rattlers head coach Brian Lane said.

The third quarter was a defensive stalemate and the score remained 20-6 until Rattlers quarterback Ernest Flythe connected with senior wide receiver Davonte Welcome to cut the Colts lead to 20-13 with just over 11 minutes left in the game.

Both defenses continued to battle, and the Colts would land the final blow as they intercepted Belleview backup quarterback Jason Dial to give the offense great field position. Running back R’Jayvious ‘JJ’ Johnson punched in the dagger with a rushing touchdown to give the Colts a 26-13 lead with just over a minute left.

Despite the loss, Lane was proud of his team and knows there is a heap of potential in his team for the 2022 season.

“They’ve showed a lot of resilience and they’ve done a good job of not pointing fingers at each other when things get down. They are good at sticking to it and not giving up.,” he said.

As for the Colts, Carr knows his team is talented and has the chance to have a special season, but he is still wanting to see a complete game and more consistency.

“We had our moments but just wanting to be more consistent. I felt like we played good in spurts but I’m still waiting for us to have that complete game. We’re just working and continuing to get better.,” he said.

The Rattlers, now 2-1 on the season, visit Forest next Friday night at 7 p.m. The Colts head out on the road to visit Santa Fe, their first district opponent of the 2022 season, at 7:30 p.m.