Dudley Page Football

Dudley wide receiver Mehki Wall (3) celebrates with his team as the Panthers defeat Page High School in a nonconference football game Friday, Sept. 6, 2019, in Greensboro, N.C. Dudley wins 35-14. (Lynn Hey/Special to the News & Record)

Site: J.A. Tarpley Stadium, Greensboro

Why the Panthers won

Dudley overcame 12 penalties thanks to some big plays in the passing game and a ground game that produced 176 yards. The Panthers made Page one-dimensional offensively for most of the second half after going up 21-7 and finished with five sacks.

Why the Pirates lost

Page was unable to move the ball consistently against Dudley’s defense and was plagued by penalties on its first two possessions of the second half, when the outcome was still in doubt. The Pirates had a net of minus-34 yards on those possessions and finished with 10 penalties.

Stars

Page — QB Javondre Paige 15-of-30 passing, 144 yards, TD, rushing TD; RB Jeiel Melton 11 rushes, 73 yards, 3 catches.

Dudley — WR Mekhi Wall 3 catches, 93 yards, 2 TDs; QB Jahmier Slade 6-of-15 passing, 160 yards, 3 TDs; RB/WR Branson Adams 6 carries, 41 yards, 2 TDs, 1 catch, 29 yards.

The big play

After Dudley went three-and-out on its first possession, the Panthers needed QB Jahmier Slade to take the top off the Page defense and loosen things up for its running game. Slade did just that, throwing a dart to a streaking Mekhi Wall down the right sideline. Wall speared the ball with one hand while fighting off a defensive back who was eventually flagged for interference, then beat another defender to go the rest of the 64 yards to the end zone. Wall would add a 28-yard TD catch later in the first quarter as Dudley went up 14-0.

Three things we learned

1. Mekhi Wall is fast. Really fast. The Dudley sophomore, who was one of the state’s top kick-returners as a freshman, had two touchdown catches in the first quarter and was dangerous any time he touched the football. The connection he is establishing with QB Jahmier Slade, also a sophomore, could pay dividends the rest of this year and beyond. “He’s got a chance to be one of the best to come through the city,” said Panthers coach Steven Davis.

2. Dudley’s ground game appears ready to bust loose if the Panthers can cut down on penalties. If Dudley can become consistent running the ball and Slade can hit a couple of big plays every game, both facets of the offense will feed off each other and make the Panthers very difficult to defend.

3. Page QB Javondre Paige is as tough a player as there is in Guilford County. A week after he had to leave the Northern Guilford game with a concussion, the Pirates’ leader spent much of the game running from pressure and trying – sometimes successfully – to make plays with his feet and his arm.

Worth noting

Senior LB/RB Jordan Dawkins wore the No. 26 jersey as Page continues to pay tribute to former Pirates player Sincere Davis, who was killed in March.

What they said

“If we’re not able to throw it, they’re just going to stack the box. That’s what they started to do, but once we hit a few passes we were able to run the ball. … Overall, I’m pleased with (QB Jahmier Slade) because I’m seeing him continue to grow. We know he’s just a sophomore starting for the first time, but if he can just grow each week that’s what we’re looking for. … We cut out the turnovers that cost us at West Forsyth. If we can just clean up the penalties and eliminate mistakes we might be pretty good.” — Steven Davis, Dudley coach

“It sounds like a broke record after three that we’ve lost in tough games, but we have to keep working. We have to keep fighting and finding ways to make ourselves better and find things that we can maybe do a little bit better in practice. You don’t reinvent the wheel in these situations with a young team. At one point I counted five sophomores on defense and four on offense. That’s who we are right now and that’s OK. We just have to get better.” — Jared Rolfes, Page coach

Records

Page: 0-3.

Dudley: 2-1.

Up next

Page: at No. 4 Eastern Guilford (2-1), Friday

Dudley: Durham Hillside (1-0), Friday

Scoring summary

Page                 0   7    0   7   –   14

Dudley            14   0  14   7   –   35

D – Mekhi Wall 64 pass from Jahmier Slade (kick failed), 1st, 6:09

D – Wall 28 pass from Slade (Marlon Darby run), 1st, 4:28

P – Javondre Paige 10 run (Tyler Elliott kick), 2nd, 2:46

D – Myles Smith 36 pass from Slade (Boateng Woodson kick), 3rd, 7:17

D – Branson Adams 4 run (Woodson kick), 3rd, 2:26

D – Adams 14 run (Woodson kick), 4th, 6:07

P – Cortez Wilson 14 pass from Paige (Elliott kick), 4th, 3:55

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Contact Joe Sirera at 336-373-7034, and follow @JoeSireraNR on Twitter.

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