Tough To Swallow: WR Denies Davie 14-7

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 6, 2012

By Brian Pitts
Davie Enterprise Record

The Davie football team got an epic performance from its defense here Friday against West Rowan.
Led by Jamal Lackey’s nine tackles, the defense held West to four first downs, 44 rushing yards, 61 total yards, turned back the Falcons (2-0) on nine of 11 third-down conversions, forced six punts and recovered two fumbles.
Somehow, it still wasn’t enough to deliver victory. The War Eagles lost 14-7 because they suffered their own misery on offense.
The War Eagles (1-1) sputtered to six first downs, 89 rushing yards, 134 total yards and failed to convert 11 of 13 third downs.  
The bottom line was both defenses were really, really good and both offenses have work to do.
“I can’t be more proud of our defense for giving us a chance to win until the end,” Davie coach Doug Illing said. “You think you’re down and out, and we’ve got a chance to tie it up (in the closing seconds).”
The Davie offense came back to earth after running all over Page in a 31-14 win. Freshman Cade Carney was limited to 60 yards after putting up 234 against Page. Stephon Smoot returned from an Achilles injury, only to suffer a fractured ankle after running six times for 21 yards. Everything about the offense struggled mightily, with two of 14 passes getting completed, although four of those were Hail Marys in the closing seconds.
“Mistakes, mistakes, mistakes,” Illing said of the offense. “We kept shooting ourselves in the foot.”
The Falcons prevailed without scoring any points on offense. Their first touchdown came on a punt return, and their second TD came on an interception return that broke a 7-7 tie.
“Very rarely does a team that doesn’t score an offensive touchdown win the game,” West coach Scott Young said. “I credit the defensive staff and defensive players. Our kids played with so much guts and heart. I don’t think you hold Davie to seven points – and that was after a special teams miscue – without playing great defense from top to bottom.
“(Holding Carney to 60 yards on 24 carries) means we’re pretty good defensively because that freshman is the real deal.”
Devon Parks returned a first-quarter punt 61 yards to the West 29, but Davie didn’t move at all from there and Woody Parrish’s 46-yard field-goal attempt was short.
There were four punts in the first quarter. West got a great boost from Tyler Kennedy, who returned a punt 43 yards to give the Falcons a 7-0 lead with 8:33 left in the second quarter. It was the easiest 43-yard return you’ll ever see. Davie didn’t put a finger on Kennedy.
“I saw one orange jersey, so I just cut to the outside, found all the white jerseys and took off,” Kennedy said.
“The wall was set up beautifully,” Young said.
The War Eagles threatened in the final four minutes of the half. Parker Correll connected with Cameron Heaggans for 36 yards to give Davie a first-and-goal at the 10. On fourth down at the 3, Illing decided to go for it. An incomplete pass kept the score 7-0 West.
A West miscue set up Davie’s game-tying touchdown. A bad snap to the punter resulted in a 19-yard loss, with Sam Nesbit making the tackle at the West 17. Correll handed off five straight times to Carney, who scored from the 2. Parrish’s extra point tied the game at 7 with 5:17 left in the third …