Football Season On The Prowl
The Magnolia Blue Eagle Football Team kicked-off its 2009 campaign with a heated scrimmage against St. Clairsville Aug. 15 at Alumni Field. The two teams played each other last season in the second annual Ohio Valley Jamboree. This season, the Red Devils came to New Martinsville to see some good old-fashioned football.
St. Clairsville started with a 10-play offense with the ball at the 20 yard line. The Devils moved the ball mostly on pass plays and scored in their last play of the drive on a pass reception.
On Magnolia’s first series, Eagles quarterback Justin Fox went deep, but the pass was dropped. A steady dosage of Dillon Jackson moved the ball with some nice holes opened up by the Blue Eagles’ front line. Nice pass completions to Derek Fruner and Jared Blatt, plus a scramble by Fox, also helped move the ball.
The Eagles’ offense didn’t score on the first series, but they moved the ball, both on the ground and in the air. On the second offensive series for St. Clairsville, the Blue Eagle first-team defense held the Devils in check with defensive end Davie Howell and linebackers Zach Neff and Traeh Keller each recording quarterback sacks. Howell added a second stop later in the Devils’ 10-play drive. The only play that went for positive yardage for St. Clairsville was the Red Devils’ last possession a 10-yard pass completion.
Just like last year, the Eagles’ offense fed off the energy of their defense and marched down the field for their first TD with only one play going for negative yardage.
Again, big yardage by Jackson highlighted the drive and a nice pass completions to freshman Stephen Rogalski and to Fruner added to the Blue Eagle gains. A nifty finger-tip pass completion to Jared Blatt put the ball near the goal line, where Jackson scored the Eagles’ first TD on the very next play.
The Devils answered with two TDs on long pass plays and Magnolia scored one more touchdown to end the scrimmage. The Eagle offense and defense looked good and many Magnolia players got a chance to shine.
Across the river, the Pilots took on Waterford and Bellaire St. John. The Pilots’ highly talked-about quarterback, Dylan Potts, moved the ball well in the short time he was in. But, his understudies, Cody Caretti and freshman Cody Caldwell, also moved the ball well.
The Pilots, who should have been pleased with their offense, scored a few TDs, as did Waterford and St. John, with all three teams giving many players some time on the field.
Down the river at Paden City, the Wildcats’ 17 players took on Parkersburg Catholic. With only a few players to face the 95 degree heat – and a second scrimmage being played Tuesday – the Wildcats limited themselves just a bit.
The Wildcats moved the ball well at times, especially in the air, with most of the tosses from senior quarterback Malakai Anderson being snagged by wide receiver Josh Bennett.
Magnolia has scheduled a scrimmage with John Marshall this Friday at Wheeling Island Stadium in the Ohio Valley Jamboree with a kickoff set for 6 p.m.
Meanwhile, Paden City will open its 2009 regular season at home against Van on Aug. 28, beginning at 7:30 p.m. The River Pilots will travel to Fort Frye on the same date, while Magnolia entertains Tolsia at Alumni Field.