Tonawanda News — Nehemiah Stone has been waiting for his chance to show what he can do at the bottom of the depth chart behind several backs in a crowded North Tonawanda backfield.
On Friday night the sophomore got what he'd been waiting for.
Starting running back Christian Mahoe left the game in the second quarter after suffering a severely sprained ankle, so Stone took advantage of the increased role and finished with 156 yards rushing and three touchdowns to help the Lumberjacks beat Kenmore East in dramatic fashion, 31-28, at the North Tonawanda Sports Complex.
"I knew I had to step up and coach looked at me and said 'it's your time.' I just wanted a shot," Stone said.. "I was just taking whatever my line gave me. I just ran where there was a hole and on some of those touchdowns, I could've walked in. That's not me, that's the line."
North Tonawanda (1-3, 1-2 A North) led for the majority of the game, but Kenmore East took the lead in the fourth quarter behind the strong play of junior quarterback Connor McMahon. He finished with 116 yards passing and four touchdowns — two passing and two rushing — and none was bigger than his 36-yard rushing score with just over six minutes left in the game.
The Jacks trailed 28-23 and NT fans in attendance feared a fourth straight loss, but sophomore quarterback Chris Woodard had other ideas. The young signal caller has made big plays the past two weeks on his team's potential go-ahead drive. But this week he had Stone to finish things off.
After Stone gave the Jacks great field position — at their own 49-yard line — on a 34-yard return, Woodard converted a 3rd and 2 on a monster 30-yard run, shedding tacklers in search of any extra yards. Stone finished off the drive with the game-winning, 6-yard touchdown run and rushed successfully for the two-point conversion.