Charlotte Catholic advanced to the NCHSAA 4A championship game for the third time in four years with a 17-8 win Friday night against Greensboro Dudley in the West Regional final.
Catholic allowed single-digit points for the ninth time this season by holding a prolific Dudley offense to just one touchdown. The Cougars held the top seed in the east off the scoreboard on two big possessions in the second half when Dudley’s starting field position was midfield.
“At halftime, I said ‘Don’t let them score and we win the game,’ ” Catholic coach Mike Brodowicz said. “We did exactly that.”
Cougars running back Jaret Anderson was dependable as usual, rushing 22 times for 134 yards and one touchdown. Anderson was kept from breaking a long run until late in the third quarter when the senior got around the edge and went 63 yards to put his team in the red zone.
“I thought I was going to score,” Anderson said. “Thankfully, I made a couple guys miss and put us in scoring position.”
Anderson capped a 12-play, 70-yard drive with a 5-yard touchdown run to put the Cougars on the board first.
Catholic benefited from a bad snap on a Dudley punt on the next drive, which led to first-and-goal from the 8. Jack Fonda booted a 29-yard field goal to make it 10-0. Dudley finally found the end zone late in the first half and converted the two-point try to make it 10-8 at halftime.
On the first play of the fourth quarter, Catholic quarterback John Walton found Connor Miller in the corner of the end zone for a TD that secured the final margin.
Quote: “This is one the best defenses in this state. I thought our defense was being overlooked as too small and not being able to handle their athletes. People have said that all year about this defense and they keep shutting people down.” – Charlotte Catholic coach Mike Brodowicz
Records: Dudley 13-2, Catholic 14-0
Worth Mentioning: The Cougars intercepted Dudley quarterback Hendon Hooker twice in the fourth quarter. Benjamin Brodowicz and Greyson Krone had picks for Catholic.
What’s Next: Catholic will take on Greenville Rose in the 4A state title game Saturday night at BB&T Field in Winston-Salem.