Eagles storm back


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SPOTSYLVANIA The Colonial Forge football team is living vicariously through the adage it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish.

The visiting Eagles, falling behind 17-6 early in the third quarter, reeled off 29 unanswered point points for the 35-17 non-district win over Courtland on Friday.

It was the third straight week the Eagles have put together an extremely strong second half performance. In two games, the Eagles scored 60 points in the second half.

“I have gotten more involved with the defense this year,” said Colonial Forge fourth-year Karl Buckwalter. “And we have decided to just keep applying pressure. We keep going with it and the kids have responded.

“At the half, we talked about this is what we have done. Now we have to go out and play Eagle football. We need to apply pressure, create turnovers and see what we can do once we get the ball.”

The game was highlighted by a halftime ceremony to celebrate the career of former Brooke Point and Courtland coach Ken Brown, who spent 13 seasons at Courtland and won four state championships three in Group AA and one Group AAA. He was named to the Virginia High School League Hall of Fame in 1998.

A bevy of former assistant coaches and former players were on had for the ceremony.

For the second straight week turnovers were the key to Colonial Forge’s comeback.

Colonial Forge forced six turnovers four fumble recoveries and two interceptions and the offense capitalized on the excellent field position, predominantly junior Corey Blue.

In the turnover department, senior James Davis was the standout. He recovered three fumbles for the Eagles and Chris Shannon also had a fumble recovery, while Jack Ferrick and Bo Trant had interceptions.

Blue, a 6-0, 171-pounder carried the ball 31 times for 200 yards and two touchdowns. Reading the blocks of an offensive line that provided the holes especially Matt Moody and Matt Capriani Blue had a breakout performance. He also had 76 return yards in the second half for 276 total.

“The line provided me with great holes,” Blue said. “They deserve a lot of credit. But we did a good job of mixing it up in the second half and playing Colonial Forge football.

“We were this good last year but we just didn’t carry it out to the field. So now it is our time to shine.”

Colonial Forge’s Brandon McKenney had a fine all-around game. The senior rushed for 54 yards on five carries and hauled in five passes from Randy Hippeard for 64 yards. The three-sport athlete was also in on six tackles and one breakup of a pass.

For the second straight week, Colonial Forge didn’t hesitate to go to its kicker Mike Porter. The 6-3, 170-pound senior, who also runs cross country, scored 16 points on five field goals and a PAT. The field goals were from 33, 20, 32, 39 and 25 yards out.

The Eagles ran 37 plays to 13 Cougars’ plays in the second half. Courtland’s Emahunn Campbell had 34 yards on eight carries while Tedrick Jeter had 39 yards on five carries. The Cougars were held to 89 yards rushing and 53 yard passing.

With the win, Colonial Forge improved to 3-0 on the season while Courtland fell to 1-2. It is the first time in school history the Eagles have won three straight games.

The Eagles host Chancellor on Friday.

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