Linden blasts Kinston, moves to second round

LINDEN — The Patriots got 221 rushing yards and three touchdowns from Marquise Shelton on their way to a 39-7 first round romp over Kinston Friday night.

Shelton scored the game’s opening touchdown on a 98-yard run with 8:04 to play in the first quarter. Anthony Robinson added to the lead with 2:08 to go in the second quarter on a 76-yard run.

Shelton added a two-yard scoring plunge in the third quarter before hitting on a 71-yard touchdown sprint with 10:49 to go in the game.

Jalen Lewis added a score on a 45-yard touchdown catch while Jamon Evans capped the Linden scoring with a 69-yard fumble return.

John Wilson got Kinston’s lone score on an eight-yard run with 1:35 to play.

Linden amassed 511 yards of total offense, finding 456 of it on the ground. Still, the Patriots had their hiccups, most prominently in the area of ball control where they lost three fumbles on the night.

“We’ve got to do the little things right, just taking care of the ball, the fundamentals,” Williams said of what his team must do moving forward. “We can’t put the ball on the ground.”

Shelton got his 221 yards on only 10 carries. Robinson added 92 yards on two rushes.

The Patriots (10-1) travel to St. Jude next week for the second round of the Class 1A playoffs.