No Respite For Eagles In Southside Opener
The tough non-district portion of the Prince Edward County High School's football team may have been over, but last Friday, the Eagles had to survive the tough district portion in a 53-15 loss to defending district champion Park View.
Fortunately for the Eagles, they are finally through a schedule that proved to be as tough and relentless as advertised when it was drawn up three years ago.
“Park View came out ready to play,” said PECHS head coach James Ford. “It was their homecoming and they had a really good and spirited crowd. They were big and strong up front and were able to take advantage of that.”
After being stopped on their first possession on a three-and-out, the Eagles spotted PV a lead on a high snap that flew over the punter's head and out of the end zone.
Park View jumped out to a 16-0 lead, before PE quarterback Cleon Watkins found senior standout receiver Marquis Fitzgerald for a touchdown to cut the Dragons' lead to 16-7.
Needing stops, the Eagles were unable to get them. Some of that was due to PV's size advantage, but a frustrating part was due to mistakes that kept giving the Dragons life. By halftime, the hosts extended their lead to a comfortable 36-7 advantage.
“We had waaaay too many penalties at inopportune times,” said Ford. “There were, I believe three separate occasions that we jumped offsides and gave them first downs.
“Offensively, we couldn't get our ground game going, and that hurt us as well.”
Watkins was 8-13 passing for 163 yards and two touchdowns. Fitzgerald was the Eagles' leading receiver with six catches for 148 yards, two touchdowns and a two-point conversion.
Javon Jackson led the Eagles in rushing with 37 yards on nine carries, however, PE was held to just 20 total yards on the evening after all negative yardage was added in.
Isaiah Davis led the Eagles with eight tackles (six solo) on defense, while Damien Mickey had six total.
The Eagles will host Brunswick on Friday night for their homecoming.
“This is a very athletic team we're facing,” said Ford. “They come into the game with the same record we have, but many of their losses have been in close games. They have a couple of good pieces that can beat you if you're not careful. It's a very important game for us not only in the district but in the regional standings as well.”