PRC falls to impressive War Eagles
Wayne County won their seventh straight game, improving to 7-1, while Pearl River Central fell to 3-4.
Pearl River Head Coach Eric Collins said the Blue Devils needed to regroup for next week and focus on the stretch run of their season, but also didn’t feel his team played their best game against the highly ranked War Eagles.
“I’m disappointed in the way we played,” Collins said, “but I’ve got to give Wayne County a lot of credit, that’s a good football team.”
Wayne County started the game with trickery as they successfully executed a surprise onside kick the opening kickoff, giving them an excellent starting field position at the Pearl River 48-yard line and shifting the momentum of the game early.
The War Eagles handed the ball off to running back Freddy Jordan on every play during the opening drive, which ended when Jordan punched the ball into the end zone from the 2 yard line after less than a minute of gameplay. A successful extra point gave Wayne County a 7-0 lead.
Pearl River answered back with a methodical drive that started on their own 36-yard line. Eleven of the Blue Devils’ 12 plays on the drive were rushing attempts, including a key fourth down conversion to keep the drive alive. A 10 yard run from running back Hunter Holifield set up the quarterback sneak on the 1-yard line, and Terek Whitehead scored with 5:55 left to play in the first quarter.
The score would be PRC’s last. Wayne County pressure forced a miss on the extra point, and the Blue Devils did not get on the scoreboard again.
Wayne County responded with a 70-yard touchdown drive that ended when wide receiver Rameik Wallace caught a 19-yard pass from quarterback David Hodo and scored with 3:05 remaining in the first quarter.
PRC started their next drive with excellent field position after a 45 yard kick return from running back Dalton Howe. The drive ended with no points after the offense failed to convert a fourth down and turned the ball over on downs with nine seconds left in the first quarter.
The key play of the first half occurred on the Blue Devil’s next possession when a bad snap went sailing over the punter’s head. Howe, who was the punter on the play, jumped on the ball at the PRC 12-yard line and turned the ball over on downs.
Hodo scored a rushing touchdown for Wayne County on the very next play with 9:40 left in the first half to make the score 21-6.
On the ensuing drive, Pearl River drove the ball to the Wayne County 29-yard line before Whitehead was picked off near the goal line by cornerback Cadarious Pannell.
Wayne County marched down the field and David Hodo punched in his second rushing touchdown of the night to make the score 28-6 with 2:15 left in the first half.
Hodo added another rushing touchdown, this one from 33 yards out, making the score 35-6 with 4:16 to play in the third quarter.
PRC attempted to get back in the game with a fake punt late in the third quarter but could not convert. Wayne County put the final points on the board when Pannell returned a PRC fumble 18 yards for a touchdown with 8:29 left in the game, making the score 42-6.
The Blue Devils have a district game against Wingfield next Friday night at home.