The wait is over for the North Myrtle Beach High School football team, and the Chiefs are ready to move on to bigger and better things.
Tailback Delonzo Williams ran for three touchdowns and added an 83-yard kickoff return for another score as the Class AAA Chiefs decisively snapped their 22-game losing streak with a season-opening 50-14 victory over Class AA Waccamaw Friday night.
Coach Perry Woolbright was glowing in the aftermath of the win, his first at North Myrtle Beach as he begins his third season at the Chiefs’ helm.
``This is all for the kids. They’ve worked so hard over the last two years and endured so much with all the losses and stuff,’’ said Woolbright. ``They’ve worked their butt off and never have come to practice with a negative attitude. We told them to stick with it, keep focused and everything will pay off. I think we turned that corner tonight.’’
Williams, a junior who carried 22 times for 171 yards and also scored on runs of 22, 1 and 9 yards, has endured two winless seasons on the Chiefs’ varsity. The 5-foot-9, 175-pounder was giddy after snapping the streak and getting the 2012 campaign off to a flying start.
``I just love it,’’ said Williams. ``When you haven’t won in two years, it’s just like a Super Bowl to us. We’re improving every week, just keep getting better and better. More to come, more wins to come.’’
The Chiefs took advantage of Waccamaw miscues in the kicking game to open up a 20-0 lead with 1:16 left in the first half on Williams’ 1-yard run.
The Warriors quickly responded with their best drive of the night, a 57-yard march in five plays, to pull within 20-7 at halftime on Jalen Simmons’ 6-yard run with only 8 seconds left in the half.
Waccamaw was still within 26-14 with 6:23 left in the third quarter on Jeffron Smalls’ 4-yard run following a botched punt by the Chiefs.
But Williams answered on the ensuing kickoff with his return for a touchdown and the Chiefs went on to score four unanswered touchdown the rest of the way.
Simmons led the Warriors’ ground-oriented attack with 51 yards on 15 carries.
NMB - Delonzo Williams 22 run (kick blocked)
NMB - Kendrick Furness 16 run (Kevin Mooney kick)
NMB - Williams 1 run (Mooney kick)
W - Jalen Simmons 6 run (Eddie Meadors kick)
NMB - Cameron Gore 8 pass from Furness (kick blocked)
W - Jeffron Smalls 4 run (Meadors kick)
NMB - Williams 83 kickoff return (pass failed)
NMB - Williams 9 run (pas failed)
NMB - Dezman Stanley 10 fumble return (kick failed)
NMB - Brandon Moore 25 run (kick failed)
RUSHING—NMB: Williams 22-171, Moore 7-88, Furness 7-46; Waccamaw: Simmons 15-51, Smalls 10-26, Travis Pierce 3-24, JJ Sherman 5-20, Raishawn Mitchell 5-16.
PASSING—Furness 7-11, 54; Waccamaw: Jack Monroe 1-3, 7
RECEIVING—NMB: Cameron Gore 3-27, Kyle Cooper 1-11, Eric Baker 1-8, Moore 1-10, Williams 1-(minus) 2.