R.J. Bendert

North senior defensive back R.J. Bendert returns an interception during North’s 69-7 blowout win over Wylie East to remain undefeated in district play.

In a game which was over from the word “Go,” McKinney North racked up more than 500 yards of total offense for the sixth time this season on its way to beating Wylie East, 69-7, Friday at McKinney ISD Stadium.

With the offensive outburst, North has scored 49 points or more for the sixth consecutive game and tallied over 60 points for the third time this season. Also, North has beaten Wylie by 58 points or more in consecutive seasons after destroying the Raiders, 90-32, last season while scoring the most points in a game in program history.

In the big picture, North (6-1, 3-0) remains undefeated in District 7-5A Division I action and is one win away from going to the playoffs for the fourth consecutive season.

“We were able to play every kid tonight, which was nice — a lot of kids who haven’t played much got into the game, which is good because they’ve worked just as hard as the starters and it was a joy that they got to play today,” said Mike Fecci, North head coach. “I’m real proud to be 3-0 because it’s a big deal, but we’ve got a big stretch coming up. We’ve got the heart and meat of our district schedule coming up with West Mesquite, John Tyler and Mesquite Poteet and we plan on enjoying this victory tonight and then getting ready for West Mesquite tomorrow.”

After getting a three-and-out from Wylie on its first series, North struck on its first play from scrimmage when star quarterback Dillon Markiewicz found his favorite target, junior sensation J.J. Henry, from 23 yards out to get the Bulldogs’ offense on the board. Markiewicz went 8-of-9 in the opening quarter for 112 yards and two touchdowns to get North’s offensive machine off and running.

Despite being highly efficient on the night by going 14-of-17 for 260 yards and four touchdowns, Markiewicz made one throw he wishes he could have back in the second quarter. The area’s leading passer threw his first interception on the season while trying to fit a pass in for a touchdown in the red zone.

The throw ended Markiewicz’s school-record streak of going 192 pass attempts without a pick.

“I was looking for my guy and made a bad play which is a part of being a quarterback,” Markiewicz said. “When I look at other quarterbacks, I look to see how they bounce back from mistakes, so I always keep my head up and moving forward. Playoff spots are good, but I want something big in my senior year and that’s a district title and I look forward to going on the road and winning a couple of big games to get that district title.”

On defense, North played its most complete game of the season by holding the Raiders to a paltry 101 total yards on the night and forced two turnovers. Senior defensive back R.J. Bendert, who grabbed a key interception, feels North’s improved defensive play is not a fluke and only getting better as they enter the stretch run of district play.

“Whenever we make big plays, we want to build off of it and the big plays we made tonight was a confidence booster and gets us into the right mindset heading into these big district games,” Bendert said. “We’ve just got to continue practicing hard everyday and doing what we do and not taking anything for granted. Since the last game of the season last year, we’ve talked about winning district and wanting to win it outright so we are very motivated to keep getting better and working hard to make that goal a reality.”

For continued coverage of the local sports scene, follow Kendrick E. Johnson on Twitter @kendrickjohnso 


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