Blue Eagles Dominate In Season Opener, 48-0
It didn’t take the Magnolia Blue Eagles’ football team long to showcase their skills Saturday night, as they scored against Parkersburg Catholic in the first eight seconds of the game, when Jakob Barrows grabbed a one-bouncer at their own 47-yard line and rushed on the kick-off, scrambling down the gut for the game’s first points.
Magnolia went back to work and forced a three and out, and took over at midfield to start the Eagles’ opening offensive series. It didn’t take but one play, as the Eagles’ four-year letter-winner Brooks Parsons took a Patrick Mirandy pitch on an end-around and high-stepped over a pair of Catholic defenders for a 51-yard touchdown, This time Mirandy’s kick split the uprights to give Magnolia a 13-0 lead with 9:32 showing in period one.
Trenton Scheibelhood recovered a muffed Parkersburg Catholic fumble on the kick-off at the five-yard line, setting up Hunter Partridge for his first of two touchdown scampers to push the Eagles’ advantage to 20-0 with 9:19 left after the Mirandy extra point conversion kick.
Mirandy’s kick-off went into the end-zone for a touch-back, setting the Crusaders at the 20-yard line. However, the Big Blue forced a loss of two on the first carry, and for no-gain on its second tote. And after a false start 6-6, 340 lbs. Miles Hostetler and a flock of Eagles recorded its first sack of the night, forcing the Crusaders to punt close to their end-zone.
The Magnolia line looked like they were ready to bury the Crusaders’ punter, and he hurried up his punt and only went to their own 22-yard line.
It took the Eagles one play to score as Mirandy hit Parsons in the back of the end-zone on a nice pitch and catch to give Magnolia a 27-0 lead with 6:09 left in the opening period of play, after another Mirandy kick.
After another Mirandy touch-back, Carter Seckman recorded a tackle for loss, and after another no-gain, the Crusaders took a delay of game before missing on a third and long to force yet another punt.
The ball died on the Crusaders’ 37, and started their next drive on the 42-yard line after a Magnolia false start. Partridge got his second touch and went the distance unscathed for a 33-0 Magnolia lead with 4:25 left in period one.
It was more of the same for the Crusaders as a pair of no-gains and an 18-yard loss, forced yet another punt.
With a fistful of new Magnolia players in the back-field, freshman Caden Cisar – at the helm in substitution of Mirandy – handed the ball off to Gage Adams twice for 10-yards and Logan Beegle for 8-yards, before James Stillwagner set sail for a 12-yard touchdown to open the second quarter of play, to give the visitors a 40-0 lead after another Mirandy kick.
After a short Blue Eagle kick-off, the Crusaders found themselves in unfamiliar territory and picked up a few yards before giving the ball back to Magnolia.
MHS freshman Silas McKeever rushed twice for five-yards and a new set of downs, while Levi Beegle added five more on a pair of toes. Logan Beegle got into the act and rushed for 20-yards to move the chains once more.
However, Parkersburg dug deep and forced a fumble to drop an apparent Blue Eagle tally. But the Eagles stripped the Crusaders of the ball shortly later to halt the Crusaders’ drive.
But Parkersburg would get the ball back before the half and accumulated a couple large gains by the Crusaders’ Ty Sturm and Aidan Stotts before the break, but couldn’t punch it in.
After the break, the Eagles’ Logan Beegle raced 72-yards to paydirt after high-jacking a Crusaders’ pass to give the Blue Eagles their 48-0 win.
“We talked about getting off to a quick start and obviously the opening kickoff couldn’t have worked out better,” Magnolia (1-0) Head Coach Dave “Doc” Chapman said. “We talked before the game you’re playing a faceless opponent. Looking on paper, maybe they’re a little out-manned, outmatched. You got to play. It got away from them in the first quarter, but our guys got to play and that’s what we talked about.
“Don’t worry about the score and execute what we’re running. The objective, coming in at the end of the night, was to walk out of here with a win. And that’s what we’re looking at. We don’t care about the score or anything like that. The objective was to get a win, and that’s what we got. Now on to Williamstown.”
Parsons led the way offensively, scoring 51-yards on the ground and 22-yards through the air on a pair of touches, while Partridge tallied two touchdowns of 5 and 42-yards on his pair of touches. Logan Beegle was the game’s top rusher with 56-yards on four carries, also scoring a touchdown on a 72-yard interception return.
James Stillwagner scored on his only carry of the night from 13-yards out, while McKeever tacked on 30-yards on five totes and scored on a two-point conversion run. He also recovered a Crusaders’ fumble. Adams added a dozen yards on two carries, while Levi Beegle netted 27-yards on nine carries.
Parkersburg netted 40-yards on the ground, with Adian Stotts leading the way with the majority of the yards.
The Blue Eagles will head back down the river Friday night to take on the Williamstown Yellowjackets at 7 p.m.