Millbrook remains undefeated in North Carolina high school football game with win over Heritage

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Millbrook wide receiver Nathan Leacock parted just enough from Heritage when it mattered most. Leacock, a Tennessee commit, caught quarterback Mason Fortune’s short slanting pass before rushing most of 48 yards for the game-winning touchdown in the Wildcats’ 28-6 opener win at Northern Athletic 4A Conference Thursday.

Leacock was overrun by the visiting Huskies secondary on a night when the defenses of both schools were dominating early. The game-winning score, the game’s first offensive touchdown, gave the Wildcats the home lead with less than six minutes left in the third quarter.

Prior to that, Millbrook, who moves to 6-0, earned his only points on special teams when DK Bryant returned a 51-yard Heritage punt in the first quarter for a touchdown.

Millbrook's Nathan Leacock (15) sprints for the touchdown past Heritage's Coleson Fields (22) in the second half.  The Millbrook Wildcats and the Heritage Huskies met in a <a class=football game in Raleigh, North Carolina on September 29, 2022.” src=”https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/OVxXIeq6PCxYZ9QQthM5Ug–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTEyNDI7aD04Mjg-/https://s.yimg.com/uu/api/res/1.2/Vq28EJqLvvYAkzr4aFM6Mw–~B/aD03NjA7dz0xMTQwO2FwcGlkPXl0YWNoeW9u/https://media.zenfs.com/en/aol_raleigh_news_and_observer_mcclatchy_356/13ff9034ab5639d305de4e56f4c87b3d”/>

Millbrook’s Nathan Leacock (15) sprints for the touchdown past Heritage’s Coleson Fields (22) in the second half. The Millbrook Wildcats and the Heritage Huskies met in a football game in Raleigh, North Carolina on September 29, 2022.

As for the game’s two-way defensive dominance, Leacock caught just one catch in the first quarter for five yards. One of Leacock’s catches in the second quarter resulted in a loss of six yards.

Heritage (5-1) scored his only points on defense on the first play of the second quarter when the Huskies’ Brandon Crutchfield paused on the ball at the right time, intercepted Fortune’s pass and returned it 41 yards for a touchdown. An instant snafu foiled the extra point attempt.

Heritage lobbied Fortune throughout the night and picked up multiple sacks. The Huskies offense – hampered by multiple injuries – never found a rhythm, despite a commendable position on the field with multiple possessions.

Millbrook quarterback Mason Fortune (11) runs and looks to pass against Heritage during the first half. The Millbrook Wildcats and the Heritage Huskies met in a football game in Raleigh, North Carolina on September 29, 2022.

The Huskies started a practice in the second quarter, 3:16 before halftime, at the 42-yard line in Millbrook. Heritage converted a fourth-and-2 from 35, but was then intercepted in the end zone by the Wildcats’ Chase McClary.

The Huskies started their first possession in the third quarter at the Millbrook 35, but got no points on the drive. Shortly after, Leacock scored the game-winning touchdown.

Xavier Pugh’s five-yard left sweep gave the Wildcats a 21-6 lead with 11:08 to go. Pugh’s scoring followed a 23-yard connection from Fortune to David Santiago on 4th-and-5 from the Heritage 28. Pugh then added a one-yard touchdown on the right guard.

Millbrook’s win overturned the teams result in the fall of 2021 – a 35-18 Heritage home win. The Huskies’ six points marked the lowest total on the program since Heritage fell 42-0 to host Cardinal Gibbons in a state playoff game in November 2019.

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