Generals pull away from Eagles in 4th quarter

Published 10:31 pm Friday, October 6, 2017

Ben’s Ford played visiting Newton County Academy close for three quarters Friday night, before the Generals pulled away with a pair of scores late on the way to a 26-6 win on Senior Night for the Eagles.

Ben’s Ford (2-6) trailed just 7-6 at halftime and 13-6 at the end of the third quarter.

“I’m really proud of these guys,” Ben’s Ford coach Dean King said. “We always talk about effort and heart, and this team gave us that tonight. We got a little gassed in the fourth quarter, but these guys never gave up.”

Early in the game, it looked like Newton might score frequently.

The Generals took the opening kickoff and marched 56 yards in 10 plays, with Braxton Rose scoring on a 3-yard touchdown run. After the extra point, Newton led 7-0 with 6:59 remaining in the first quarter.

Newton held Ben’s Ford to three-and-out and then immediately began driving again on its next drive. But on second-and-goal from the Ben’s Ford 3, Rose fumbled the ball and the Eagles recovered it in the end zone for a touchback.

King said the play helped shift momentum.

“We talk about being ready for the moment,” King said. “When the ball is loose on the field, we have to grab it. That was a big play for us.”

Although Ben’s Ford followed the fumble recovery with another three-and-out, the Eagles went right back on offense just a few plays later when Ben’s Ford recovered a second fumble at its own 19-yard line.

After a delay of game penalty moved the ball back 5 yards, it only took the Eagles a single play to strike. Quarterback Tyler Winstead threw a pass of about 20 yards to Justin Moore, who was tight against the right sideline. He caught the ball and made a defender miss the tackle, before running away from the rest of the Generals for an 86-yard touchdown reception.

The Eagles’ extra point attempt was barely wide to the left, but Ben’s Ford still cut the lead to 7-6 with 9:27 remaining in the second quarter.

Ben’s Ford had another scoring drive late in the second quarter, but it fizzled after the Eagles lost a fumble at the Newton 26 with 36 seconds left.

Newton added three more touchdowns in the second half, while the Generals’ defense kept Ben’s Ford out of the endzone the rest of the game.

Eli Finnegan had a 23-yard touchdown run with 5:51 remaining in the third, but the Generals failed on a two-point conversion and it was 13-6.

Lincoln Jordan scored on a 14-yard run at the start of the fourth quarter and the extra point attempt failed, as the Generals moved ahead 19-6 with 11:54 remaining in the game. Finnegan added a second touchdown, this time from 21 yards out, and the extra point was good with 6:57 left as the Generals closed out the scoring.

The Eagles had a chance to drive in their final possession of the game, but lost a fumble at the Newton 20 on the final play.

Ben’s Ford will close out its season on the road Friday night, as the Eagles travel to face Sylva-Bay Academy.