San Tan Youth Football League Eagles

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Eagles Shake, Rattle, and Roll Rattlers

October 13th, 2008 · No Comments

The Eagles took the field Saturday morning for a key match up with the Rattlers as both teams jockey for playoff positioning. Coming off their bye week, the Eagles were chomping at the bit to get back on the field and into the endzone.

The Eagles were a bit short handed as Danny Kittner, Trent Hatch, and Haiden Stowers missed the game due to Fall break family vacations. The Eagles were also dealt a big blow when two-way starter Wyatt Harris missed the weight cutoff by a measly 4 ounces. (The league really needs to think hard about their weight policies in my opinion… I can see 4 pounds, but 4 ounces more than half way through the season?) Javin Wright also missed the first half because he missed a practice last week due to illness. (Yet another questionable rule in my opinion).

At any rate, the absence of these key players provided an opportunity for some of our young bucks to step in and get the job done. And that they did as the Eagles came out and dominated the ball game from the opening kickoff and ultimately prevailed 18-12 in a game that wasn’t as close as the score would indicate.

Dakota Neer had another sensational game as he turned an off tackle run into a one man reverse play and raced down the sidelines for the games opening score late in the first quarter. The Rattlers foiled the Eagles point after try attempt leaving the score 6-0.

The Eagles defense was dominant once again as the Rattlers were only able to manage one first down in the entire first half and never threatened to score on the Eagles. Offensively, the Eagles were their own worst enemy having been uncharacteristically flagged for an assortment of holding and illegal procedure penalties. The penalties put the Eagles in difficult down and distance situations, and to their credit, the Rattlers made some nice plays defensively to stop the Eagles powerful running game. The half ended with the Eagles leading 6-0 and threatening to score deep in Rattler territory.

Halftime brought some inspirational speeches from the coaching staff who was imploring to the boys to “Flip the switch and play smart Eagle football in the second half”. As an observer, you could sense that the only team that could beat the Eagles on this day was the Eagles themselves. A fact that Coach Gene emphasized as the Eagles rested and rehydrated under the shade at the south end of the football field.

The Eagles apparently took inspiration from the halftime speech as they came out fired up to start the second half. Keanu Lopez belted a nice squib kick on the kickoff which the Rattlers had difficulty fielding as the Eagles kickoff team raced down the field. With a loose ball in his sights, Lopez made a beeline for the ball and recovered for the Eagles near mid field.

The Eagles didn’t waste much time cashing in on the mistake as Anthony Saba punched one up the gut for a score to extend the Eagles lead to 12-0. To their credit, the Rattlers once again turned back the Eagles extra point attempt.

The Eagles defense was again dominant on the next possession and regained possession for the Eagles offense. The Rattlers proved up to the task as they stopped the Eagles just short of the endzone on a drive that would have put the game out of reach early in the fourth quarter.

On the first couple of plays, the Eagles defensive reserves layed the wood on the Rattlers with some bone crushing hits and gang tackles. On third down, the Rattlers finally broke one and raced into the endzone to pull to within one score 12-6.

On the next possession, the Eagles called on Dakota Neer to provide some insurance and Dakota delivered a long touchdown run leaving several Rattler defenders grasping at air and the rest eating his dust. The score put the Eagles back in front comfortably 18-6 with time winding down in the fourth quarter.

The Rattlers managed to break another long run just before the final horn to draw within a touchdown, but it was too little, too late as the Eagles notched their third victory of the season 18-12.

The Eagles remained perfect in the 5th quarter this year as the kids managed to outlast the Rattlers 6-0. Michael Alexander had another spectacular touchdown run as he tiptoed down the sideline for the only score of the stanza. The Rattlers 5th quarter team was game and a tough challenge for our boys, but in the end we had a little too much mojo for them to compete with. Great job by all!

Next week, the Eagles will match up against the 2-2 Cardinals in what should prove to be one of the Eagles toughest games to date. The Cardinals were upset by the Rams this weekend, but have played dominant defense all season. Should be an interesting challenge. Should the Eagles manage to pull out the victory, they all but guarantee a #2 seed heading into the playoffs on 11/1.

Tags: Football

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