E.A. Sports Today

King of the Day

Wiggins runs for 6 TDs, wins Homecoming King, as Jacksonville turns back Oneonta for region lead

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

JACKSONVILLE —Clint Smith can’t ever remember a Homecoming King scoring six touchdowns in a game.

“Most of the time I don’t even know whose up for Homecoming King,” the Jacksonville head coach said.
He’s intimately aware of it this year, though, because two of his top offensive weapons were among the contenders.

Ron Wiggins rushed for 193 yards and a career-high six touchdowns Friday night and was crowned Jacksonville’s Homecoming King at halftime of a 55-21 rout of Oneonta that moved the Golden Eagles closer to a second straight region championship. They can clinch it with a win Thursday night against White Plains.

The votes for Homecoming King were in well before the game started, but Wiggins certainly didn’t hurt his candidacy among any stragglers with what he did against the Redskins. He scored the Golden Eagles’ first six touchdowns on runs of 6, 10, 2, 1, 18 and 84. Two of his touchdowns came on Jacksonville’s first plays of the second and third quarters and his longest immediately answered Oneonta’s first score.
“It was a big accomplishment,” Wiggins said. “My line was creating holes, I was hitting them, and most importantly we got the win and that’s what matters.”
Wiggins has come up big for the Golden Eagles all season, but he’s seem to hit another gear these last two weeks. In the last two games – both against teams undefeated in the region – he has rushed for 461 yards and 11 touchdowns.
“Our offensive line is making strides and getting better, so that has helped,” Smith said. “And Ron has just turned it up a notch. He’s always run hard and run well, but the past two games he’s really run with purpose and just done a really good job for us.”
Wiggins won Homecoming King in a three-man race that included quarterback Luke Jackson and Golden Eagles golfer Jackson Burrell.

“It was a big night for Ron,” Smith said.

Wiggins admitted he was nervous about the court and asked a friend to text him the homecoming results, but the Golden Eagles returned to the field for the second half in time for him to hear the announcement live. Claire Hendrickson was the Homecoming Queen.
“When I heard it I was just surprised,” he said of his selection. “To be honest I really didn’t know. Anybody could have won it.”

It didn’t bother Jackson one bit that his teammate nosed him out for the blue velvet crown.
“Two football players (in the running), I really like that, for real,” Jackson said. “When I came out and saw that he won it was like, ‘Well, dang.’”

This was billed as a potentially tight showdown, but Jacksonville had control of the game from the start. The Golden Eagles led 27-0 at the break after holding the Redskins to nine yards of net offense and two late second-quarter first downs, never giving them a chance to move the ball behind their massive offensive line until the second half.
The first two plays set the tone. The Golden Eagles broke in and threw Oneonta running back David Hall for a 12-yard loss and then Yessman Green picked off Brody Pinyan. Jacksonville had two interceptions, two sacks and eight tackles for loss in the game.
“Our kids did a really good job tonight of staying focused and doing those type things that allowed us to come out and play well tonight,” Smith said. “I really felt like it was a team effort. Defensively we played really well early, we won the field position battle early and we the momentum the whole first half.
“I was proud of how we played, how we didn’t get distracted by all the Homecoming and we followed up last week’s performance with this week. Last week (against Anniston) was a really big game. There’s always concern for a little bit of letdown, but I was really proud at how we came out and took care of business. Just did a really good job of getting things done.”
Long live the king.

Cover photo: Jacksonville running back Ron Wiggins (C) is flanked by his brother Kiontae (L) and teammate Cederick Woolverton after scoring six touchdowns and being crowned Homecoming King during the Golden Eagles’ win over Oneonta.

One (21)Jax (55)
141st D16

Oneonta           0    0  14  7  – 21
Jacksonville     7  20  21  7  – 55
Scoring plays
J – Ron Wiggins 6 run (Mason Terrell kick), 4:56 1Q
J – Ron Wiggins 10 run (Mason Terrell kick), 11:52 2Q
J – Ron Wiggins 2 run (kick failed), 7:57 2Q
J – Ron Wiggins 1 run (Mason Terrell kick), 3:18 2Q
J – Ron Wiggins 18 run (Mason Terrell kick), 11:03 3Q
O – David Hall 1 run (Erick Vargas Pineda kick), 7:13 3Q
J – Ron Wiggins 84 run (Mason Terrell kick), 6:32 3Q
O – David Hall 7 run (Erick Vargas Pineda kick), 2:56 3Q
J – Jaeden Barksdale 43 pass from Luke Jackson (Mason Terrell kick), 1:38 3Q
J – Jacoby Zackery 34 pass from James Ogle (Mason Terrell kick), 2:21 4Q
O – Braden Moore 50 run (Erick Vargas Pineda kick), 0:07 4Q

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