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Eagles Succumb to Yellow-Jackets

By Staff | Sep 7, 2016

Photo by Cris Jenkins Magnolia’s quarterback Nick Priem gets one off before being hit by a Williamstown defender.

For three quarters, the Magnolia defense held its own against Williamstown. Unfortunately for the Blue Eagles, a Yellowjackets score right before halftime took a little bit of spark out of them.

Williamstown then came out of the locker room and found the end zone on its opening possession en route to a 20-point third quarter, led by quarterback Trenton Tallman who finished with 301 yards on the ground and three scores while throwing for another two in a 34-12 victory against Magnolia on Friday night at Bill Stewart Memorial Stadium on Alumni Field.

“They’re out of timeouts and they score in two plays. That was a gut wrencher, I’m telling you,” Magnolia (0-2) coach Dave Chapman said. “If we get out of there at 7-0 instead of 14-0… Then they come right out in the third quarter and put that drive together.”

“Tallman is a good player. You think you got him wrapped and the kid comes alive on contact as well as I’ve seen. He’s a running back playing quarterback and we knew that going in.”

Tallman’s first long run seemed to be for a sure touchdown. Starting at his 4-yard line, Tallman sprinted up-field with no one in front of him. Chase Streets had different plans, however, as he chased Tallman down and stripped the ball with Magnolia recovering on its 17-yard line to keep the score at 7-0.

That gave the home team some momentum as it was able to drive the ball downfield to the Williamstown 36 in nine plays. After a holding penalty, sack, delay of game and an in-completion, the Eagles were forced to punt.

“We shot ourselves in the foot with the penalties,” Chapman said. “We get the ball across midfield a couple of times (then) we get called for these holding penalties.

“We’ve just got to keep working. We’ve got a bunch of young kids and they still believe. We’re not folding the tents up. We?re going to be there.”

After alternating possessions, Williamstown (2-0) got the ball with less than a minute to go in the first half. Taylor took a hand-off for a 42-yard run and then scored on the next play on a 9-yard pass from Tallman, to put the score at 14-0 with 14 seconds remaining.

The Yellow-jackets got the ball first in the second half and started where they left off. A seven-play drive that ended in a Tallman rushing touchdown upped the margin to 21-0.

“He’s terrific,” Williamstown coach Terry Smith said of Tallman. “He’s actually throwing better than he did last year. He’s just a tremendous player. He’s very fast, but he’s strong and smart and is just a good player.”

The Yellowjackets also improved on holding onto the ball from last week. After fumbling it seven times and losing it five against Tyler Consolidated, they only had the one fumble on the Street strip.

Magnolia found the end zone for the first time on an eight-play drive that ended in a Nick Priem 1-yard run to put the score at 27-6. The senior finished with 32 yards on eight carries while completing eight passes on 15 attempts for 111 and an interception. Street tallied 30 yards on the ground while Leo Herrick, who transferred from Linsly, was the leading receiver for the Blue Eagles with five receptions for 70 yards.

“Those kids worked out all summer,” Tallman said. “Actually, Leo lives right across the street. He’s a New Martinsville guy. He was here as a freshman and transferred to Linsly, now he’s back. I’m glad he’s back. The kids all group up together.”

“We’ve just got to keep working. We are not down, even though it may look that way. Williamstown is a good football team and I tip my hat to them.”

After the Priem score, Tallman answered right back with a 68-yard touchdown run to make it a 34-6 game.

Trevor Hoosier had the other receiving touchdown for the Yellow-jackets.

“I don’t think we want to be complacent,” Smith said of the 2-0 start. “You don’t know what 17-year old kids are thinking. We just want to keep pushing.”

Street had the other score for the Blue Eagles on a one-yarder to put the final points on the board.

Street led the Blue Eagle ground game with 31 yards and a touchdown, while Priem totaled 27 yards and a score. Brooks Parsons netted one yard on three carries.

Threw the air, Priem connected on 7-14 passes for 110 yards. His favorite receiver was Leo Herrick with five catches for a career-high 80 yards. Parsons caught one for 30 yards, and Street grabbed one for no yards.

Defensively, Hunter Partridge hauled down 13 Yellow-jackets, while Sebastian Stickler added five stops, with two for loss of yardage. Street had four tackles and forced a fumble, while Dylan Conner made five tackles.

The Big Blue will look to get a win Friday night at Bill Stewart Memorial Stadium when they host the Barnesville Shamrocks at 7:30 p.m.