MINT HILL, NC – The Independence High School football season continues to dominate our sports section this fall season. Their turnaround in just two seasons by Head Coach DJ McFadden is remarkable and having a young talented quarterback in Justin Little certainly makes a coaches job a little easier. However, the maturity, leadership, and decision making have improved dramatically from game 1 to game 12. This only happens through good coaching and mentorship. Why we must select Justin Little once again as the “Athlete of the Week.”
Athlete of the Week:
Justin Little – The sophomore Patriot quarterback completed 16 of 20 passes for 277 yards, a .800% completion rate, averaged 17.2 yards per completion, his longest was perfectly executed on the first offensive play of the game for Indy with a 67 yarder to teammate Sincere McIntyre. He tossed 2 touchdowns and his QB rating was 154.2. He also gained 73 yards rushing and scored 2 more touchdowns.
Overall, Little’s numbers keep on accumulating which is very impressive. In 12 games he has 171 completions on 239 attempts for 2769 yards at a completion rate of .715. He averages 230.8 yards per game through the air, has tossed 26 TD’s, with only 6 interceptions and an excellent QB rating of 135.8. Rushing he has added 555 yards on 67 carries and 12 additional TD’s. This season to date he has a combined yardage total of 3,324 yards and 38 touchdowns. He is a scoring threat from any part of the field and can be explosive with his longest rush from scrimmage being 75 yards, and longest pass completion of 67 yards.
Sincere McIntyre – The senior all-purpose offensive player had 2 carries for 28 yards and 1 TD rushing, and had 3 pass receptions for 82 yards with a 67 yard TD. He contributed 55 yards on kickoff returns for a total of 165 yards. In 12 games this season he has accumulated 1472 all-purpose yards and 8 touchdowns for the Patriots.
Will Brown – The WR had 4 catches for 91 yards, he averaged 22.8 yards per pass reception, his longest a 30 yarder for a touchdown. in 12 games this season Brown has 24 catches for 447 yards, his longest a 58 yard pass reception and 7 TD’s. Also, he has been a consistent blocker for the Patriots running backs.
Joe Moraglia – The senior in 7 games who returned to the lineup after overcoming an early season injury is making the kind of contribution we expected. On Thursday night he contributed 52 yards on 3 pass receptions for 17.3 yards per catch. He also made some key blocks on big drives for Indy. On the season a consistent WR has 15 catches for 265 yards, a long of 50 yards and 2 TD’s.
Special Teams: Charlie Gottlieb, Daniel Locklear
Defensive Player of the Game: Joe Reddish