Thursday, September 9, 2010
Air attack leads way for Pats
By BARRY BURLESON
Flags flew more than passes Friday night for Marshall Academy. Fortunately for the Patriots, the passes netted more yards and produced plenty of points.
The MA air attack ignited a 41-14 win over Falkner in a private versus public school matchup. The Pats improved to 2-1. The Eagles dropped to 1-2.
Marshall was nine of 14 through the air for 262 yards. Hank Owens threw for four touchdowns - two to John Tomlinson, one to Aaron McAlexander and another to Taylor Maurey. Tomlinson caught five passes for 131 yards and was the team’s top rusher with 54 yards and a score on 12 carries.
“The plan going in was to run it, but if we couldn’t, start throwing it,” said coach Keith Wicker. “We knew we could throw the ball. It was just a matter of when.”
Meanwhile, the Pats were flagged 17 times for 140 yards. They had three touchdowns called back on penalties. The Eagles were penalized 10 times for 100 yards. Due to the 27 infractions, the game lasted eight minutes shy of three hours.
“That’s got to stop,” Wicker said about the penalties. “We have to cut that down big-time.”
Marshall led 21-0 at the half.
Late in the first quarter. Owens made a quick toss to Tomlinson, who sped 33 yards to the end zone. Chase Carpenter kicked the extra point. He was five of six on the night.
With 3:57 to go in the second quarter, MA’s Chad Mitchell and Zack Pritchett sacked Falkner quarterback Will Robertson for a 6-yard loss on a fourth and seven play.
Two plays later the Owens to Tomlinson connection worked again - this time for 42 yards and six points.
The Patriot offense got the ball back with 1:50 to go in the first half. Owens threw to Chase Ferrell for 40 yards. Then with 26 seconds on the clock he hit an open McAlexander in stride for 47 yards and the score.
MA’s Kevin Fitzpatrick got the first of his three interceptions on the night to end the half.
The passing game continued to click to start the third quarter. Owens threw to Tomlinson for a 23-yard gain and then scrambled and found Maurey for the 34-yard touchdown.
The Eagles got on the scoreboard midway through the third when Robertson darted 30 yards up the middle. He also kept for the two-point conversion. MA led 28-8.
To start the fourth quarter, a 44-yard field goal try by Carpenter hit the crossbar on the goalpost and bounced away.
MA, taking advantage of two personal foul calls on Falkner, padded its lead with 5:26 left. Fitzpatrick scored on a 12-yard carry. The extra-point try was blocked.
Robertson, who was “Mr. Everything” for the Eagles, returned the ensuing kickoff 82 yards to the MA 10. Hunter Hopkins scored from there. A try-for-two failed. It was 34-14.
Two minutes later Tomlinson tallied the game’s last touchdown on a 17-yard run, and then Carpenter booted his fifth extra point.
Falkner rushed for 102 yards in the game and passed for 101.
Tomlinson led the defense with nine tackles. Maurey followed with eight.
“I’m pleased with the outcome of the game,” Coach Wicker said. “Our kids played extremely hard, but not smart. If we play hard and smart, we will have a good ball team.”
The Patriots host Tunica Academy Friday at 7:30 p.m. The Blue Devils, coached by former MA assistant Jimmy Hicks, are 1-1 after a win last week over Lee (Ark.)
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