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Home News-Telegram Sports Eagles soar over Trojans, 22-14

Eagles soar over Trojans, 22-14

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COMO — If it was ever a night for nail biting, Friday night at Ron Heflin Field was that night as Como-Pickton versus Cumby football game came down to the final seconds.

“It was a little bit scary,” said C-P offensive coordinator Conley Bland said after the game.

The Cumby Trojans had inched closer to the end zone with Michael Morris at quarterback. The Trojans got the ball on the 27-yard line with 52 seconds remaining on the game clock and the C-P Eagles are up 22-14.

Morris made a fake to the right only to take it and run for the left but was unsuccessful. Eagle Corey Gibson came in for the tackle.

"We knew it would be a close game," said Cumby head coach Ed Perez. "But we are starting to really gel as a team."

On the next play Morris sought out the same target as in a previous play, Donnie Rodriguez. It looked like a connection in the end zone. It was close but Eagle sophomore Brodie Ogle broke the link with the official declaring it incomplete.

The Trojans gave it one more try before the eight seconds that remain disappear. Although both teams are littered with injuries, the Eagles' line stood firm, and C-P regains possession of the ball. The final seconds tick away ending the first non-district action in C-P favor, 22-14.

This ball game was full of heat, and it wasn't all due to the muggy weather. These two rivaling teams each got off to a rough start, and it showed. In the first half the officials had to make warning to players as temperatures rose. It was clear Cumby had come to town to avenge last season's loss.

"We really came out and played hard," said C-P head coach Paul Tullis. "Cumby's defense was tough; we had to make adjustments. Carter came through, the defensive line did good, Brumley really showed he could step up when Carter was out hurt."

The home standing crowd released cheers as Angel Mercado snagged an interception with 7:35 on the first quarter clock. First quarter action progressed quickly.

In the second quarter the momentum was lead by Eagle quarterback Jeff Hendricks. Hendricks connected with teammate James Carter. He made a run for a first down with 11:09 on the clock. The chains came out to verify. Seconds later, Carter repeated for another first down.

It was a Cumby interception by Timmy Cook that shifted the momentum and the possession of the ball, giving Cumby a first down on the 20-yard line.

As the Trojan starting quarterback Cook let a pass sail to Joseph Thornhill come up with it and make a 20-yard run causing more heated reactions.

With second quarter game clock reading 9:06, Eagles’ running back James Carter limped off the field with a leg cramp. The two teams continued to be scoreless.

The Eagles faltered with a fumble but managed to recover making it third and 11 for the Eagles. Cumby Trojan Zak Escobar intercepted the ball to make it first and 10 for Cumby with 6:56 left in first half.

Cumby called a time out to regroup, and it worked. The next play Trojan Michael Morris put his head down and barreled though C-P players to cross the goal line, putting the first score on the board. Trojan Taylor Gay's PAT was good. The game is 7-0 Cumby.

Moving the ball back to the home team, Kaleb Mund came off the field injured. With 5:47 on second quarter clock, Eagle Robert Carden recovered a C-P fumble. Flags stopped action pushing C-P back five yards. Hendricks passed to Eagle Brandt Steele. Steele made a short gain tackled by Cumby's Donnie Rodriguez to make it second and 13.

The host team called a time out with 4:43 before halftime. Carter was tackled in the backfield by the Trojans. This put C-P at a third down.

Hendricks took a pass out to the right side intended for Trevor Cagle. Trojan Brandon Heer broke in forcing a fourth down for the Eagles and a punt. The punt is blocked and Cumby recovered. Cumby gained more yards with the Eagles flagged for off-sides. Morris made a long play only to be called back with a holding flag by the Trojans. Cumby's Jordan Strickland drove the ball down the field.

Morris, in the quarterback position due to Cook's injury, released a pass. Eagle Even Tellez knocked it down. Both teams showed wear, Cumby fumbled and C-P recovered. More injuries occurred.

With the football in the hands of Hendricks, the score was still in Cumby's favor. Hendricks connected with Corey Gibson for a first down.

Cumby answered back sacking Hendricks with 1:34 before buzzer. Hendricks made a pitch to Carter. He swept up the left side. It was fourth down and long one. Carter got his second wind. He made an explosive touchdown run for the Eagles with less than a minute. The scoreboard marked 7-6 Cumby.

This is where the game got interesting. C-P had the PAT blocked or so it seemed. After discussion, officials declared the ball was picked up behind the line of scrimmage by Eagle Robert Carden for two-points. As a few drops of rain sprinkled down, the Eagles took the lead 8-7.

Trojan Donnie Rodiquez took the kick mid-field on the Cumby 41-yard line, but a flag is thrown-illegal procedure on Cumby.

Hendricks broke a Cumby pass with 41 seconds on first half game clock. Morris made a run to be tackled by Mercado killing the clock at 23 seconds. Cumby called a time out with two seconds left. Cumby's Rodney Hobbs drove only to be tackled by a flock of Eagles at the halftime buzzer.

The second half started in Cumby's favor. Hobbs obtained a first down for the Trojans. Morris got in more distance. He followed that play with run that broke tackles for another TD and the PAT by Gay was booted good. After another injury, C-P senior center Zach Hankins came out of the game substituted by Justin Lohr.

Hendricks pitched to Carter only to see the play end with another hurt player, Coyt Butler. Third quarter clock read 7:22. More penalties were called.

Eagle Tanner Brumley took the pigskin for a 14-yard ride clearing the first down marker. Cagle gained 11 on his dash. Brumley repeated to be tackled by Brandon Heer. Hendricks, out of targets, is brought down by a host of Trojans.

This was followed by a touchdown by Brumley. Mercado's PAT had a flag due to a false start. The re-kick was good.

With 3:11 left in the third quarter Cumby's Morris found Hobbs for a first down. Morris ran on a keeper for a short gain to achieve another first down with the ball at the C-P 31-yard line and the clock at 1:02. Cumby inched closer to their destination. The third quarter ended 15-14 in favor of the host team.

The fourth quarter began on a hand off to Trojans exchange student Daniel Ddgatu. Eagle senior Hunter Cooksey took him to the ground for second and five. More injuries occur and a delay of game flag is thrown on Cumby. Eagle Corey Gibson tried to get his finger tips on an interception just missing. Morris completed the next pass for the fourth down.

Cumby Trojan Strickland made a long catch but not enough for a first down, and the Eagles took over possession.

Carter zigged and zagged for a C-P first down. This put C-P at Cumby's 47-yard line. Brumley carried but is tackled by Daniel Garcia. Hendricks sliced through for a first down. Steele made a gain to put the Eagles down at the 5-yard line. Hendricks pushed through for a touchdown with Mercado's PAT signaled good.

Cumby's Hobbs has a low snap but still recovered for second and 15. Eagle Matt Ford pancaked Morris on the next play. With flags called, Cumby was given a first down.

This is where the nail biting began. Morris faked and made a toss to Rodriguez on the 42-yard line. The Eagles finished the game on top, 22-14.

Carter rushed for 179 yards on 20 carries scoring two touchdowns.  Hendricks had six carries to gain 48 yards and no fumbles. Brumley rushed for 41 yards on five carries with one touchdown, and Steele had four on two carries. Mercado rushed for one yard on a single carry. As a team, C-P rushed for 273 yards against Cumby.

Cooksey, Gibson, and Cagle gained 41 total yards on receiving. At QB, Hendricks completed three out of 12 for 41 yards with two interceptions. The Eagles had 314 total yards.

Rushing for the Trojans was Michael Morris had 15 carries for 121 yards with two touchdowns. Rodney Hobbs had eight carries for 29 yards rushing along with Ddgatu had three-for-five and Cook had one carry for a gain of a yard.

Receiving for Cumby was Jordan Strickland with four catches for 27 yards, Donnie Rodriguez with three catches for 28 yards, Brandon Heer had two catches for 25 yards, Hobbs with one catch for thirty yards, and Morris had one catch for 10 yards.

At QB for the Trojans, Cook was 4-for-12, 45 yards and two interceptions and Morris had eight-of-16 for 75 yards. Cumby had 276 total yards.

"We need to get stronger in the middle and stay on our blocks," Tullis added.

C-P will travel to Ore City next Friday while Cumby host Union Hill on Saturday.

 

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