Eagles soar in homecoming win, 32-6

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 23, 2006

After watching the Monroe Academy Vols put together a 13-play, 74 yard touchdown drive to start the game, Fort Dale head Coach James &#8220Speed” Sampley thought his Eagles (4-1, 3-1 in region play) might be in for an upset on homecoming, but then again, he said he wouldn't have been surprised.

&#8220We always play poorly on homecoming every year because they're so distracted,” he said of his players. &#8220One of these years we're going to mess up and lose.”

That wasn't the case though as the defense finally woke up, with a little help from Ty Newton who posted four picks from his safety position, and the Eagles' offense, with Newton at QB, shifted into high gear scoring three touchdowns in the second quarter en route to a 32-6 win.

&#8220After the first drive we played well, we just weren't paying much attention at the start of the game,” said Eagles' defensive coordinator Jimmy Gardner, whose defense held the Vols to only 22-yards rushing and 105 yards in total offense. &#8220All of our linebackers played well. After that first drive our defensive line dominated, and when your defensive line tears down their offensive line your linebackers are going to make some plays.”

Newton said he and his teammates were a little surprised after Monroe marched down the field in the first quarter to take the lead.

&#8220They weren't what we expected,” he said. &#8220They jumped out on us early, but we came out and got it done.”

After hearing that he might have tied the Fort Dale record for picks in a game, Newton heaped praise on the defensive line.

&#8220I think it was because the line rushed (their quarterback) so hard,” he said. &#8220If it weren't for that I probably would not have gotten (the interceptions).”

Senior tailback Mika Jones started the scoring for the Eagles with a three-yard touchdown run off left tackle to cap a three-play, 21-yard drive that was set up by a Newton interception. Kendall Gibson split the uprights to make the score 7-6. It wouldn't take the Eagles long to stretch the margin as junior Blake Mullins scampered 25-yards for another TD and Gibson was good again on the PAT to make it 14-6 with 10:42 left in the second quarter.

Newton added another TD on a 16-yard run in the second quarter and Jones capped the Eagles' scoring effort with runs of 22 and four yards in the third quarter, the last touchdown coming on Fort Dale's best drive of the night, a 12-play, 62-yard march.

&#8220We still have to work on our offensive consistency,” Sampley said. &#8220We drove the ball pretty well at times but we didn't finish very well. We ran the ball good tonight and we had a good night throwing the ball. I also think our offensive line pass blocked better than they ever have.”

Offensively for the Eagles Newton was 17-of-30 passing for 150 yards and one interception. Davis Watts caught five balls for 47-yards and Mullins snagged four passes for 42-yards. The Eagles rushed for 205-yards with Jones carrying for 86 yards, Mullins for 50-yards and Newton and Jeffrey Stead each posting 26-yards on the ground.

Defensively Mullins had 10 tackles and junior Barry Boan had nine tackles.

The Eagles travel to Taylor Road Academy next week. Kickoff is slated for 7:30 p.m.