E.A. Sports Today

Donoho D’s up TCC

Falcons closing in on 100 straight wins when holding an opponent to fewer than 10 points; includes Thursday’s scores

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today
 
HOWELL COVE –The Donoho football team moved closer to a milestone that genuinely impressed coach Mark Sanders on a night he was looking for something to be impressed about.
 
Rod Elston accounted for 137 yards of offense and two touchdowns, Ridge Hopkins ran for one and threw for one, and Conner Goodson returned a fumble 28 yards for a score as the Falcons returned from an open week to beat Talladega County Central 33-6.
 
Perhaps the biggest stat of the night was the historical significance of the victory. It was the Falcons’ 98th consecutive victory when holding an opponent to 10 points or less.
 
The Falcons have won 60 straight games since 2000 when holding opponents under 10 points. The last time they lost in such a circumstance was September 1991 (Bibb Graves 7-6), Robert Green’s first season as head coach.

“Ninety-eight games? I didn’t know that. That’s something,” Sanders said. “What’s that, one of those Alabama football history stats? I like that website.”
   
On this night the Falcons held the winless Tigers to 72 yards of net offense – 52 of it on two plays – and came within 5:08 of a running second-half clock of posting their third shutout of the season.
 
Their offense scored on four of their five possessions in the first half and were denied score the fifth when Amari Smedley appeared to find the end zone for his second touchdown of the game but his carry was ruled a fumble and a touchback.
 
“I think we were a little flat in some things,” Sanders said, “but I thought we still played really good in spite of a few plays. We’ve got a lot of things we need to get better on – our sharpness, just the little things … things we had been doing for a while we just kind of lost sight of.
It’s good to be 5-1 and still have some things to work on. I’ll take that.”

Elston rushed for 90 yards, caught two passes for 47, scored on runs of 2 and 3 and was stopped just short of a third touchdown after a 62-yard run. Hopkins threw a 14-yard TD pass to Smedley to open the scoring and completed Elston’s long run with a 1-yard sneak. Goodson had his scoop and score with 38 seconds left in the half for the Falcons’ final touchdown. Hopkins completed 5-of-6 passes in the first quarter and 6-of-8 in the game for 118 yards.
 
“We worked hard all week long, except for Friday,” Elston said of the open week. “Coach told us not to take any time out and that’s what we did. We just stayed at it. It did us good. We knew what we were doing, we watched film a lot. On defense we knew what they were going to do and on offense we really knew where the holes were going to be and what plays we needed to run.
 
“Thanks to my line the hardest thing I had to do right there was find my mouthpiece (which he went searching for after the game). Our line really stepped up, created big gaps. Our quarterback kept his composure and made real good plays. And our defense stepped up, almost pitched a shutout.”

Don (33)TCC (6)
141st D6
21-123Rushing25-74
6-8-0C-A-I1-2-0
118Passing(-2)
2-0Fum-lost3-3
1-14.0Punts3-28.0
6-70Penalties2-30

Donoho           13  20  0  0  –  33
TCC                  0   0  0  6  –   6
Scoring plays
D – Amari Smedley 14 pass from Ridge Hopkins (Ethan Miles-Jamison kick), 6:25 1Q
D – Rod Elston 2 run (kick failed), 2:25 1Q
D – Rod Elston 3 run (kick failed), 3:49 3Q
D – Ridge Hopkins 1 run (Ethan Miles-Jamison kick), 2:36 2Q
D – Wesley Goodson 28 fumble return (Ethan Miles-Jamison kick), 38.3 2Q
T – Laderrius Ligon 2 run (run failed), 5:08 4Q

Thursday’s scoreboard

CLASS 7A
James Clemens 63, Grissom 0
Prattville 44, Jeff Davis 7
CLASS 6A
Blount 39, Gulf Shores 0
Fort Payne 36, Buckhorn 35 (OT)
Muscle Shoals 45, Cullman 0
Pelham 38, Jackson-Olin 7
Wetumpka 33, Benjamin Russell 20
CLASS 5A
Briarwood Christian 38, Parker 28
Guntersville 37, Brewer 7
LeFlore 58, Wilcox Central 0
CLASS 4A
Childersburg 44, Elmore County 22
Danville 42, DAR 33
Williamson 34, W.S. Neal 16
CLASS 2A
Thorsby 42, Fayetteville 14
CLASS 1A
Donoho 33, Talladega County Central 6
St. Luke’s Episcopal 66, Fruitdale 52
Thorsby 42, Fayetteville 14
Winterboro 43, Appalachian 26



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