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Prep Football: Undefeated Eagles Pass Another Test
BY TAFT COGHILL JR.
Bill Brown said there was no magic to his halftime speech.
Colonial Forge’s football coach said his talk with the Eagles was pretty typical. He wanted his players to respond to adversity. He encouraged the Eagles to fight until the end.
After his team’s 35–21 Commonwealth District victory over Mountain View, Brown told his players he was “amazed” at the way they responded.
Colonial Forge (6–0, 5–0 Commonwealth) scored 28 unanswered points to overcome a 21–7 halftime deficit and keep its perfect season intact.
“We had a test and obviously we came out and passed the test,” Brown said. “These kind of wins are much better than any blowout. With this young team, this is a valuable win that can carry over a long time.”
The Eagles’ fans certainly enjoyed it. They crashed the Wildcats’ homecoming party as they formed a path for Brown and his players to run to the locker room after the victory. They screamed loudly and slapped hands with the players as they celebrated.
“It feels great,” Eagles’ junior wide receiver Daniel Ezeagwu said. “We needed that support.”
Ezeagwu scored on a 35-yard reception and a 1-yard touchdown run. Colonial Forge quarterback Damen Daniel overcame three interceptions with 105 rushing yards and two scores.
The Eagles amassed 330 yards on the ground as they dominated the second half.
“They just jammed it down our throats,” Mountain View coach Lou Sorrentino said.
Sorrentino was baffled by the way his team played in the second half after a sterling first-half performance.
The Wildcats (4–3, 2–3) came out with an imaginative offense that included passes from wide receivers, and a bit of the Wildcat formation for star wide receiver DaeSean Hamilton.
They went ahead 21–7 on Quinton Gray’s 26-yard interception return for a touchdown with 5:43 left in the second quarter.
But Colonial Forge’s defense, which had allowed just 22 points all season, stiffened in the second half.
And Daniel said he could sense Mountain View’s defense wearing down.
“Our offensive line did a great job blocking and our running backs did a great job making cuts,” Daniel said. “We just got it done.”
The Eagles tied the game at 21 on Mike Campbell’s 39-yard touchdown run with 10:12 left in the game.
They caught a break after Mountain View’s next possession.
Wildcats’ punter Dalton Fraser sensed his punt was about to be blocked on fourth-and-19. So Fraser took off running and attempted a pass, which fell incomplete. Colonial Forge took over at Mountain View’s 28-yard line.
Four plays later, Daniel scored his second touchdown of the game, a 1-yard plunge.
The Eagles added the finishing touches with Ezeagwu’s 1-yard run with 1:39 remaining.
Afterward, Colonial Forge’s fans chanted “This is our house” as the Eagles’ players bounced up and shouted “6–0 baby.”
“We just had to get our nerves out,” Ezeagwu said, “and then we came out and played to the best of our abilities.”
Colonial Forge visits Hylton in a nondistrict contest next Friday. Mountain View visits Stafford.
Colonial Forge 0 7 7 21 — 35
Mountain View 14 7 0 0 — 21
MV-D. Hamilton 9-yard pass from E. Burress (D. Fraser kick)
MV-E. Burress 1-yard run (D. Fraser kick)
CF-D. Ezeagwu 35-yard pass from D. Daniel (M. Meyers kick)
MV-Q. Gray 26-yard interception (D. Fraser kick)
CF-D. Daniel 6-yard run (M. Meyers kick)
CF-M. Campbell 39-yard run (M. Meyers kick)
CF-D. Daniel 1-yard run (M. Meyers kick)
CF-D. Ezeagwu 1-yard run (M. Meyers kick)
First downs20 13
Rushing yardage50-338 28-120
Passing yardage116 195
Rushing: Mountain View—Gordon Collins 18-101; DaeSean Hamilton 3-11; Elijah Burress 7-8, TD. Colonial Forge—Damen Daniel 18-105, 2TD; T.C. Burton 16-88; Mike Campbell 3-43, TD; Daniel Ezeagwu 7-39, TD; Jeff Moore 3-38; Justin Brown 1-14; Joel Miller 1-9; Malik Shabazz 1-2.
Passing: Mountain View—Elijah Burress 14-23-1 195, TD; DaeSean Hamilton 0-2-0 0; Dalton Fraser 0-1-0 0. Colonial Forge—Damen Daniel 5-15-3 116, TD.
Receiving: Mountain View—DaeSean Hamilton 7-88, TD; Quinton Gray 3-74; Dillon Smith 1-28; Gordon Collins 2-14; Collin Hasenecz 1-4. Colonial Forge—Austin Hall 1-39; Daniel Ezeagwu 1-35, TD; Justin Brown 1-29; Jeff Moore 1-10; Gary Jennings 1-3.
Taft Coghill Jr.: 540/374-5526