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Drifters hope to improve on disappointing last year

Drifters hope to improve on disappointing last year

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KG football reloads, eyes another big year

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W&L Eagles defeat number 1 ranked Cavaliers

King William made the trip from Central Garage to Montross to make a statement, that they are as good as advertised and deserving of the number one state ranking. The Cavs, who were ranked by many papers and websites as the #1 team in the state, played and defeated Washington & Lee twice last year. King William coming in had a 5-0 record, but when you look deep, the combined record of their opponents was 8-18. There marquee wins were against the defending Single A State Champions Essex (2-2) and Sussex (3-2).
Washington & Lee put it all together at the right time.

“There was no doubt in my mind that this football team was going to go out and play like this,” Eagles Coach Malcolm Lewis said. “I felt like we had a chance, and I think we did some really good things. The defense played well; we started off dominating the game. We still have a long way to go, we have to protect the ball and get better on the offensive line.”
In the first quart the Eagles forced a three and out on the Cavs’ first possession and went to work early on the offensive side of the ball. Marquise James busted open a 31-yard touchdown run that was followed by an Evan Lewis extra point. On the Eagles’ next possession senior quarterback Bryan Burrell had a pass get tipped and returned for a touchdown to even the score up. Otho Gaskins, a junior return man who has already returned one kick off for 95 yards this year, returned another one Friday night for 80 yards to put the Eagles back up. Not long after that the Eagles’ running game got going again with another 21-yard run. Going into the half it was 19-7 Washington & Lee. No one saw this coming, not the King William faithful or the few fans at the Eagles Nest.
The Eagles kept the pedal on the gas in the third with Burrell breaking a 67-yard touchdown run open.
“That play looked like a bust, once it was snapped I thought it was going nowhere, but Burrell made it happen.” Lewis said. The run put the Eagles up 25-7. The Eagle defense played lights out all night, pressuring the highly touted King William quarterback, forcing him to throw two interceptions, forced two fumbles and held the Cavs to 176 total yards passing and rushing.
Later in the third, junior quarterback Josh Phones hooked up with senior wide receiver T.J. Campbell for 20 yards. The Eagle players went into the fourth quarter holding four fingers up indicating that they were 12 minutes away from an improbable victory. With four minutes to go in the fourth, the Eagles were still leading 32-7 before King William scored on a deep pass and also a 75-yard fumble recovery.
The negative side for the Eagles were the two turnovers, but even more so the lack of poise having nine penalties for 65 yards. Washington & Lee amassed 233 yards on the ground. Bryan Burrell lead the Eagles on the ground with seven carries for 135 yards and a touch down.
The Eagles yet again play the underdog role at home this Friday against the undefeated Lancaster Red Devils.
The players have asked for the community’s full support on Friday.

Eagle boys continue to roll
Cullen Oliver won his second race of the season last Wednesday against Essex High and Lancaster High. He was followed by Luis Lopez (second), Emmanuel Valdez (third) and Cale Coryell (fourth). The win puts the boys at 5-1 overall (not including invitationals).
“We had a good showing, but we are nowhere near where we should be, we know Lancaster will be much better at Districts” Oliver said. “We have a good shot [at the District meet], but we know we can still get better, we want to get better, we have to get better.”
Hudson Hutt rounded out the top 5 for the Eagles, but finished at ninth place. Eighth grader Zack Bowen rounded out the top 10.
“We took first, second, third and fourth, but our fifth, sixth and seventh have got to close the gap for us to stand a chance at Districts and Regionals,” senior caption Cale Coryell said.
The girls, who have been plagued by injuries all year, continued to battle. Sarah Sisson, who will be in the hunt to win the district meet, placed third overall but had her best showing yet.
“I know this was a PR for me, but it’s nowhere near where I plan to be at districts,” Sisson said. Lidia Cardenas placed fourth overall, but the girls lost to Essex (35) and Lancaster (36).
“Losing Taylor Lewis has hurt us big time,” Eagles coach Cindy Flickinger said. “Two of our other girls are out as well, one with shin splints and another with a groin injury. Our other girls have to step up.”
Both teams travel to Middlesex today to face boys regional favorite Mathews and girls regional favorite Middlesex. In two weeks W&L host districts on Oct. 28.

JV Football
The Washington & Lee JV football team traveled to King William last Wednesday night. It was a game that the young defense was ready for. The Eagles forced King William into six turnovers, all of them interceptions. Eric Mason started off the interception parade followed by Davon Hamilton, who was responsible for three picks total. Wallace McDowney had a spectacular interception off of his own tip and Jay Jims turned a simple pass in the flats into an awesome 40-yard interception return.
Although the Eagles had six interceptions they were only able to turn them into 14 points. The JV got their first score on a rushing touchdown by Mcdowney, and Kwame Gray added the two-point conversion. Eric Mason added the Eagles’ final 6 points with a touchdown pass from a scrambling Dwayne Cherry. The offense was able to churn up yardage through the air and on the ground but penalties negated two rushing touchdowns.
The Eagles received solid special teams play as well. Cherry provided solid punting with good team coverage. Gray had a kickoff return and a punt return only one block away from a score.
The 4-1 JV football team travels to undefeated Lancaster on Wednesday, Oct. 13. Don’t miss out on a great game at 6:30 p.m. at Lancaster High School.

Cole Vanover
The Journal

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