Youthful Eagles fall in opener

Published 12:41 am Saturday, August 25, 2012

By Tommy Bryant

Sports Writer

LASKER – With only four seniors listed on their roster, many believed the 2012 Northeast Academy varsity football team would be in a rebuilding mode on the heels of a successful 2011 season.

While the current campaign is only one game old, it sure looks like the forecasters were right.

The Eagles showed their overall youthfulness here Friday night as they managed to find the endzone only once during a 42-6 setback against St. David’s School in the season opener for both eight-man football squads.

While it was a long night for Northeast, they did manage to avoid a shutout in front of the home crowd as the Eagles punched in a touchdown with a shade over six minutes left in the game.

Taking over at midfield following a St. David’s punt – forced by a fine defensive play on third down by junior nose guard Zack Byers – the Eagles used a steady diet of runs by junior Christian Fleetwood and senior Adam Creech to piece together an eight-play scoring drive capped by Fleetwood’s 15-yard touchdown run.

However, that wasn’t the only offensive highlight of the game for the Eagles. The home squad had a nice drive on the game’s second series, one highlighted by six runs by junior fullback Bo Daniels. Those 21 tough yards by Daniels helped the Eagles reach the Warriors 19 yardline late in the first quarter where Northeast lost possession on downs.

Northeast put together another good drive at the midway point of the third quarter. There the Eagles mixed the run (led by Fleetwood and Creech) with the pass (12 yards from Fleetwood to senior Michael Cooper and 10 yards from Fleetwood to junior Joseph Brown) to reach as deep as the St. David’s 14 yardline. But that’s as far as the ball would move as the Eagles surrendered possession on loss of downs.

Meanwhile, everything was coming up in pairs for the visiting Warriors as Reef Ivey and scored twice on runs of 10 and 19 yards (both in the first quarter); Clay Vick connected with Christopher Andrews on two TD passes (each covering five yards in the second quarter); and Melvin Briggs found paydirt twice in the third period on scoring runs of 18 and 8 yards.

The Eagles will try to regroup next week when they host Cary Christian Academy at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 31.