Dimitris Camp is playing is playing the best football of his life, and Hopewell High is playing along.
Camp, a junior tailback, ran for a career-high 200 yards and three touchdowns on 19 carries in the Titans’ 42-20 win against West Charlotte Friday at Jack Martin Stadium for Hopewell’s second straight victory. His previous best of 198 yards was in last week’s 47-34 win against North Mecklenburg.
“We wanted to pound them,” Camp said. “We wanted to punch first. “We wanted to establish the running game and get (the offensive line) going. Our offensive line stepped up big.”
Camp did his share as well, slicing through West Charlotte on the Lions' homecoming for touchdown runs of 6, 47 and 46 yards as Hopewell (3-5, 2-2) accumulated 315 rushing yards on 35 carries. Titans quarterback Jerry Chadwick didn’t have to pass often, but he was efficient, connecting on 6-of-11 tries for 137 yards and a score.
“(Camp) is a special kid who is a special, special athlete,” Hopewell coach Matthew Jenkins said. “He’ll get in the weight room in the offseason, get a little bigger, a little stronger, a little faster, and he’ll be even better next year.”
Hopewell blew the game open with a decisive third quarter run. Camp swept around left end for a 46-yard run to boost the Titans’ advantage to 35-20 with 7:30 left. Tajai Liles’ fumble recovery in West Charlotte territory on the Lions’ next possession set up Dominique Heath’s 1-yard plunge and the Titans were never threatened. Liles also had three sacks for Hopewell, which limited West Charlotte (0-8, 0-4) to 173 yards on offense.
“We’ve seen it over and over again,” West Charlotte coach Marcus Surratt said. “Whether it (is opponents) doing something that we don’t prepare for or whether it’s we’re not executing what’s being called. And other times they’re just making better adjustments than we are.”
After giving up 207 yards to West Charlotte tailback Pralowe Grier in the first half, Hopewell adjusted in the second as the Lions were forced to play catch-up. On offense, the Titans churned out big chunks of yardage with the ground attack with Camp and Dominique Heath doing most of the damage.
“The effort in the first half offensively was really, really good,” Jenkins said. “Defensively, (West Charlotte) did some things we didn’t prepare for as much because we didn’t think they were going to be that much of an option team against us.”
Grier finished with 241 yards on 21 carries and two scores, including a 73-yard scamper that pulled the Lions to within 28-20.
Hopewell and West Charlotte swapped big plays in the first half, with the Titans outgaining the Lions 252 yards to 198. Both sides exploited the ground game, with Camp gaining 115 yards and two scores on 12 carries, while Girer ran for 207 yards on 13 tries. Hopewell receiver Jonquez Williams added an 83-yard kick return for a score along with a 33-yard touchdown reception from Chadwick.
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