A week’s worth of practice did not lead to perfection for Bald Eagle Area but it did for Tyrone.
The Golden Eagles scored on a 69-yard touchdown on their first play of the game, an off-tackle run by tailback Gary Weaver.
“On the first play, no one touched him,” said a perplexed BEA coach Ron Hoover. “We practiced and practiced against that all week. It’s a simple off-tackle play and no one touched him.”
Tyrone’s next score came the next time it had the football as quarterback Drew Hunter lofted a perfect pass to Parker Mitchell, who was running a fly pattern down the left sideline.
Two plays, two touchdowns.
“We practiced against that all week,” Hoover added. “We didn’t want them to get down the field deep.”
Trailing 14-0 with 6:09 left in the first quarter, the Eagles eventually fell to the Golden Eagles 42-14 at Gray Veteran’s Memorial Field.
“It wasn’t the script we had written,” Hoover noted after his team’s fifth loss in six games. “We knew they had big-play potential and we didn’t want to get behind them. Once we did they made us do things we didn’t want to do.”
The Golden Eagles added a third TD in the first quarter as they took advantage of a 10-yard BEA punt that allowed them to put the ball in play at the BEA 30. From there they moved to the BEA 2, where Hunter hit Michael Lewis for the score with 4:25 to go.
Tyrone scored twice in the second period to push the game into the mercy rule, getting its first score on a 10-yard run by Weaver, who finished the night with 139 yards on 19 carries. The second came at the end of an impressive two-minute drill that covered 97 yards in 2:04 as Hunter connected on four straight passes of 22, 32, 20 and 14 yards to put the ball on the 11. He hit Mitchell from there with five second left on the clock.
“We had worked against the plays for the tight end but our people who were supposed to cover him got lost. We were too worried about getting beat deep and they were catching balls right in front of our safeties,” Hoover explained.
Tyrone scored its final touchdown on its first possession of the third quarter when Hunter hooked up with Cullen Raftery for a 52-yard scoring strike at the 6:53 mark.
BEA scored twice in the fourth quarter as Tanner Kresovich hit Brandon Guenot for a 57-yard score with 7:52 left in the game. Jake Koleno then kicked the first of his two PATs. A 79-yard pass from Kresovich to Guenot on BEA’s next possession put the ball on the Tryone 11. After a penalty pushed them back to the 20, the Eagles got down to the Tyrone 8 and Kresovich skirted right end from there for BEA’s second TD. Koleno again kicked the PAT with 1:23 left in the game.
“That was a nice start for us,” Tyrone coach Justin Wilson said of his team’s first-quarter outburst. “Getting two touchdowns on our first two plays got things rolling. And once we got the momentum going we took advantage of it. They’ve been struggling and when we got rolling it took the wind out of their sails.”