By Ron Morris

Independence traveled to South Mecklenburg Friday night and started off their season with an explosive offensive performance giving the Patriots a 49 – 0 win over South Mecklenburg.

The Patriots took the opening kick off and put together a 80 yard drive, capped off by a touchdown pass from quarterback Kevin Hopkins to Pierre Lockwood with 6:56 to go in the first quarter.
After the opening drive, the Patriots’ offense slowed down and led 7 – 0 with 4:26 left in  the first half.  The Patriots then scored three touchdowns in the final 4:26 giving them a 28 – 0 halftime lead.

With 4:26 left in the second quarter the defense got on the board when Adonis Alexander scooped up a fumble and ran 68 yards for the score.  On the next possession  Kevin Hopkins found Jamar Jenkins for a 14 yard touchdown with 1:18 to go. And with  only 18 seconds left in the half, Kevin Hopkins hit Will Walton for a 40 yard score putting  up 28 – 0 at the end of the first half.
In the third quarter the Patriots added two more scores. At the 8:10 mark quarterback  Kevin Hopkins ran it in from the 16 yard line putting the Patriots up 35 – 0.  With 5:35 left  in the third, Hopkins found Will Walton for a 23 yard touchdown, his second of the night, the Patriots going up 42 – 0.
The Patriots’ final score came at the 8:00 mark in the fourth quarter when backup quarterback Christian McPhail hit Quantavious McGill for a 62 yard touchdown pass making the score 49 – 0.
Kevin Hopkins finished the night hitting 17-of-23 for 225 yards and four touchdowns, and ran 16 yards for a score.
The defense held South Mecklenburg to 182 yards.  South Meck’s quarterback  Tyshawn Carter went 10-of-16 for 117 yards and had eight carries for 35 yards.
Independence will face North Mecklenburg Friday night for their home opener.  
Photos by Ron Morris. For more Independence photos, visit