Epic win bittersweet for Devericks

Published 10:19 am Thursday, October 20, 2016

The Davie football team’s epic win over North Davidson on Friday was bittersweet for Tim Devericks.

Two days earlier, DeVore Holman resigned as coach for personal reasons. The beloved Holman is a War Eagle through and through. He graduated from Davie in 1984. He was an assistant coach for 23 years (1990-2012). He became head coach in 2013. This was his 27th year in the program, and he had his team off to the best start (7-1) in 10 years.

Devericks, 38, was named interim head coach. He joined Davie as an assistant in 2005, became defensive coordinator in 2014 and now he’s the 11th head coach in Davie’s 61-year history.

Fans worried about the psychological health of the War Eagles, who were crushed by the news of Holman’s resignation. Could they get off the mat in time to prevail against North, a dangerous team that has won 10-plus games the past four years? The 45-42 win was a testament to their character.

“I don’t know another group that could face the adversity they faced this week and still respond in a highly emotional game the way our guys did tonight,” said a teary-eyed Devericks. “I’m just super proud of everyone on this team for the way they responded over the past few days.

“It was really hard for me. One of my career goals was to be a head coach, but no one wants to do it in this kind of situation. I was stuck between a rock and a hard place, but (Holman) reassured me and gave me full confidence. Him having my back means a lot.”

Quarterback Chris Reynolds’ performance was worthy of a poster. He hit long pinpoint passes, often on the move, and he connected with seven receivers. The dizzying numbers that set or tied three school records: 27 completions for 413 yards and five TDs.

He tied the single-game record for TD passes (four) in the first quarter and broke the record in the fourth. Of the 12 games with four-plus TD passes, Reynolds is the author of four of them.

The passing yards set a record. Garrett Benge had the old mark of 384 from a 47-37 win over West Rowan in 2006.

Reynolds matched his own record for completions in a game; he also had 27 in last year’s 45-28 loss at North. There have been four games in history with 25-plus completions, and Reynolds owns all four.

Oh, by the way, he moved to second place in career TD passes. Benge had 57 from 2005-07. Reynolds has 48. Parker Correll had 44 from 2012-14.

“I’m glad someone else has to defend him because he is a special player,” Devericks said. “Whatever college gets him is going to be lucky. He might not show the measurables that people want on paper, but that kid has heart and he’s a competitor.”

Is there a hotter kicker than senior Jared Griggs? He made two field goals, making him 10 for 11 on the year. It’s the most FGs in nine years. It’s good for a tie for third on the single-season list. David Wooldridge hit 13 in 1999, 12 in 2001 and 10 in 2000. Michael Rowe hit 10 in 2007.

The season has been defined by payback wins. The War Eagles avenged a 2015 loss to Page in the opener, and Page hasn’t lost since. They snapped losing streaks of seven games to West Rowan, three to Reagan, four to West Forsyth and four to North.

Davie (8-1, 4-0 CPC) is alone in first place. It is seeking its first title since ‘11 and its first outright title since ‘04. “My message to the kids is keep chasing,” Devericks said. “We’re chasing the next game. The next game is bigger because we make it bigger. We’re just going to keep chasing.”

Junior Cooper Wall (10 catches for 124 yards, three TDs) had nine or more receptions for the fourth time in his decorated career. Ben Ellis and Wall are the only receivers to have nine or more catches on four occasions. …Broc Barnette had his team-high third fumble recovery. … The 50-50 pot was worth $623.