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Comets get 47-14 Homecoming win

South Boston News
Zack Carter and Tucker Harris combine to block Martinsville’s extra point attempt in the first quarter Friday. (David Conner II photo) / October 14, 2019
Halifax County High School varsity football flattened winless Martinsville, 47-14 Friday night, adding extra excitement to the annual Homecoming celebration.

The Comets are 5-1, and one of the larger football crowds in recent memory saw plenty to celebrate. The Comets are hoping to host a regional playoff opener, and there’s clearly a positive upswing with the football program.

Between both the varsity and jayvee, Halifax football is a combined 13-1.

Comet coach Grayson Throckmorton said the players had a tough week of practice, getting prepared for Homecoming.

With all the pre-game festivities, “We got the W we needed to seal the cap on Homecoming.”

That’s a great thing for everyone involved in Blue Comet football. Throckmorton noted Martinsville played hard and he complimented Bulldog coach Bobby Martin.

Throckmorton lamented some of the Comet mistakes, but he chalked that up to young guys playing high school football.

He’s still looking to completely eliminated mistakes, but he noted, “We did enough at the right time to score and our defense backed us up. We did a good job.”

Halifax exploded in the second half, and drilled the Bulldogs, now 0-7, with a potent combination of very effective rushing and a very productive combination of quarterback Thomas Lee and wideout Traivius Chappell.

Halifax surrendered an 86-yard kickoff return from Jahil Martin, as the first quarter ended in a 6-6 tie. The Comets led 14-6 with 5:44 left in the second quarter, following a one-yard scoring thrust from Mikyler Smalls and a two-point conversion from William Davis.

Davis had an interception that helped set up a scoring opportunity. The Comet defense played opportunistic, aggressive football.

Zyon Wilson capped a first half of solid short field production into a one-yard scoring run, and Halifax led 21-6 going into the break.

Halifax broke it open in the second half. The Comets had a nifty misdirection 29-yard score from Christian Mack. The conversion was good, and Halifax led 28-6, with 9:52 left in the third period.

Martinsville continued to struggle with field position, as Tucker Harris had a solid tackle for loss, with 8:11 left in the third.

Chappell later outran ineffectual Martinsville coverage on a bomb, and Halifax led 35-14 with 3:57 left in the period.

The Comets later exploded in the second half, capped by a 65-yard run by Mack late in the game.

Lee helped direct Halifax to score on four of its first six possessions in the second half. Lee said, “I felt a lot of momentum there,” said the Comet senior, who savored this win during Homecoming.

Chappell has emerged as a major target for Lee, as off-season workouts to refine the timing has paid dividends.

And the Comets showcased an improved football product for Homecoming. “Really big. The atmosphere was amazing. Luckily my quarterback was able to throw me some good passes and I was able to make good plays,” said Chappell.

Halifax improved to 2-0 in the Piedmont District. But a challenging three-game road swing starts Friday at GW-Danville, followed by visits to Magna Vista and Patrick County. The Comets play once more at home, for Senior Night, against Tunstall at the end of the regular season.

Halifax will be considered the underdog against GW. But Throckmorton noted, “you’ve got to play the game. It’s not won on paper.”

As for Friday’s stout win, Throckmorton said, “We executed well. We had a great night.”

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