(article by David King)
North Springs welcomed the strong new Denmark Danes from the Forsyth County part of Alpharetta fresh off their 43-0 win. The Spartans came back again and again but came up just short from the 9-yard line to fall 39-32.
On the Danes 3rd play of the game, the Denmark QB threw a rainbow to 6’4″ Ze’ Vian Capers for a 77-yard touchdown. Zahir Nichols returned the kickoff to the Denmark 41 where the Spartans drove 17 yards before turning over on downs. After a Dane 3-and-out, the Spartan offense featured Kyree Green, Zahir Nichols, and Ryan Gordon to set up a 32-yard Aaron Bell touchdown pass to Nick Keou. Derek Viersen’s PAT knotted the score at 7. Denmark drove to the Spartan 12 before the defense got a stop. The Spartan offense made little progress and punted to the Dane 47. Denmark scored quickly but missed the PAT.
The Spartans opened the 2nd quarter with a short drive near mid-field that ended with a high snap fumbled on 4th down. A Denmark touchdown was waved off for illegal formation. On 4th down, defensive backs Torice Antione and Jordan Dugger made a great play knocking down a pass at the 2. After a brief Spartan possession, the Danes scored in 3 plays but missed the 2-point try to lead 19-7. After another Spartan punt, the Danes advanced to the Spartan 14 before being stopped. Dante Camp, Nick Keous, and Aaron Bell led a 2-minute drill down the field but time ran out when the officials called a spike ‘intentional grounding’.
Zahir Nichols opened the 2nd half with a return to his 42. Kyrie Green ran for 20 yards, followed by a Nichols leaping catch and Chaise MacArthur barreling to the 5 and then the 2. After the Danish defense stiffened, Derek Viersen made a 20-yard field goal to pull within 19-10. The Spartan defense stopped the next drive, setting up a drive to the 32 that ended with offsetting penalties and a Spartan with a bleeding neck. The Danes responded with a lightning strike to expand the lead to 25-10. The Spartans had a sustained drive capped with Dante Camp to the 22, Kyree Green screen from Bell to the 3, and Zahir Nichols racing left for the TD to pull within 25-17.
Denmark capped off a long drive of their own early in the 4th quarter to lead 32-17. Neriyan Brown had a crazy zigzag return to the Dane 41, setting up Bell to Keou for a 41-yard touchdown. Those two connected again for the 2-point conversion to close the gap to 32-25. with 10 minutes left. A 76-yard ensuing Danish drive widened the gap to 39-25. The Spartans turned the ball over on downs at the North Springs 41. Two incomplete Dane passes kept the clock from running and a bad punt snap enabled the Spartans to take over at the Denmark 41. Kyree Green took a Bell screen 34 yards for a TD and 39-32 score. Spartan special teams recovered a deflected onside kick at the 48. The Spartans raced to the Dane 9, where a deflected pass was intercepted, ending Spartan hopes.
The Spartans have a rare double-bye, resuming action against Carver on September 21st.