Titans football gains momentum

HUNTERSVILLE – The Hopewell Titans got their 2012 season off to a rocky start by losing four of their first five games.

Hopewell High quarterback Tijuan Sifford (2) threw a 99-yard touchdown pass to Dominique Heath and ran for an 80-yard score in a 45-24 victory against Lake Norman on Sept. 28. (Cliff Mehrtens/MI Monitor photo)

After a 45-24 win on Sept. 28 over Lake Norman High, quarterback Tijuan Sifford said his team was finding its rhythm. Hopewell moved to 2-4 overall entering an Oct. 5 game at Mooresville. The Titans went 5-7 and 3-4 in I-MECK 4A conference play in 2011.

“We’re getting better,” Sifford said. “As an offense, we were kind of separated from the defense at the start of the season. Now we’re all working together as a team and we’re (improving).”

Hopewell coach David Johnson singled out two players – Sifford and wide receiver Dominique Heath – who carried the Titans during their early-season struggles. Johnson said they’re the pair who will be expected to help the team build on its second I-MECK 4A victory of the season.

“Tijuan just does what he does: make plays,” Johnson said. “Same for Dominique. You know what you’re going to get out of those guys when they’re in the game.”

The October portion of the Titans’ schedule won’t be easy, Sifford said. Hopewell’s first game, against Mooresville, pits the Titans against the league’s runner-up team from a year ago. Hopewell faces Mallard Creek High, who won the I-MECK 4A championship, on Oct. 12, then playoff contender Vance High on Oct. 19.

The Titans conclude their regular season at North Mecklenburg High on Oct. 26.

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