FINAL SCORE: Apprentice School 36, Fork Union 35
RECORDS: Apprentice School 2-6, Fork Union 4-2
LOCATION: Newport News, Va.
IN BRIEF: Trailing 24-15 at the half, Fork Union fought back with 20 second-half points, but the Builders were able to able to hold on for a win courtesy of a late fumble recovery.
HOW THEY SCORED
- After a big 77-yard Travis Harris kick return to open the game, Ethan Bryce put the Builders on the scoreboard early with a 6-yard rushing touchdown.
- Starting on their own 45-yard line, Brenden O'Neil started the Builders' fourth drive of the day with a 20-yard strike to Bryce Scott. After a pair of Brandon Jones rushes for 21 yards, O'Neil found James Green in the back right corner of the endzone for a 14-yard score. The touchdown capped off a 4-play, 55 yard drive that gave the Apprentice School a 14-0 lead with 6:35 to play in the opening quarter.
- The Blue Devils would answer on their next drive, with Devin Dixon returning the kickoff 37 yards to the Builders' 42-yard line. A 16-yard Malik Deloatch pass to Zachary Jacobs helped get Fork Union into field goal range, and John Kight would his 27-yard attempt to make it 14-3.
- Austin Wall notched a field goal of his own on the Apprentice School's next posession. From their own 38-yard line, the Builders' rushers combined for 46 yards to get down to the Fork Union 3-yard line, but a pair of holding penalties moved the team back to the Fork Union 19-yard line. An 11-yard run by O'Neil would set up Wall for a 25-yard field goal try, which gave the Builders a 17-3 lead early in the 2nd quarter.
- On the first play of their next drive, the Blue Devils caught the Builders off guard as Louis Wessel completed a 48-yard pass to Dixon. At the Builder 17-yard line, Wessel found Nygel Lee in the back right corner of the endzone for Fork Union touchdown. On the ensuing extra-point attempt, General Brown was able to get through the line and block Kight's attempt to make it 17-9.
- Back at their own 19-yard line, O'Neil connected with Lou Piccolo for a 45-yard gain. The freshman quarterback then picked up 20 yards on the ground before finding Quinton Phillips for a 9-yard touchdown. The score made it 24-9 with 5:14 left in the 2nd quarter.
- Fork Union finally got a touchdown on the ensuing drive as the Blue Devils covered 66 yards in 12 plays. At the Builder 12-yard line, Jashawn Banks caught a Deloatch pass in the endzone to trim the Builder lead to 24-15.
- In the 3rd quarter, O'Neil threw his third touchdown on the day as he connected with Alvin Goodwyn for a 6-yard score to make it 30-15. The play capped off an 8-play, 66-yard drive that featured a 17-yard run by Bryce and a 15-yard roughing the passer penalty by Fork Union.
- Denzel Opoku paced the Blue Devils on the following drive, rushing 5 times for 31 yards and a score to make it 30-22 at the 5:42 mark in the 3rd quarter.
- The Apprentice School was able to pin Fork Union back at its own 19-yard line, but Deloatch scrambled for a 12-yard pick up. An illegal block moved the Blue Devils back, but Deloatch hit Dixon for an 82-yard touchdown to make it 30-28.
- The Apprentice School looked to score again early in the fourth quarter, but Cyriacus Ibezim forced a fumble at the Fork Union 25-yard line and Sidney Wellons recovered it at the 20-yard line. Wellons would then take it 80 yards for the touchdown and give Fork Union its only lead of the game, 35-30.
- Green helped the Builders respond with a 48-yard kick return to the Fork Union 24-yard line. O'Neil connected with Phillips for a 10-yard gain and then ran 3 times to get into the enzone. The Apprentice School attemped a two-point conversion to try and make it a three-point game, but the try failed. The score made it 36-35 with 9:35 left in the game.
- With 1:45 to play, Fork Union looked to its 2-minute offense to get the upset. Deloatch connected with Lee for a 32-yard on 3rd-and-10 from the Blue Devil 18-yard line. A pair of Deloatch scrambles picked up another 29 yards and moved the ball up to the Builder 23-yard line. I. Gordon then got to Deloatch in the backfield, forcing a fumble. Khris Smith recovered the ball and O'Neil would then take a knee to seal the win.
BEHIND THE BOX SCORE
- The Apprentice School moved the chains 21 times, compared to just 19 first downs for Fork Union.
- The Builders' ground game totaled 269 yards, while Blue Devils' rushers totaled 149.
- Both teams were close in overall offensive production. The Apprentice School put up 420 yards, while Fork Union finished slightly ahead with 442 yards.
- O'Neil was responsible for 247 yards of total offense. The freshman electrician apprentice from Virginia Beach, Va. completed 9-of-19 passes for 151 yards and 3 touchdowns, while also rushing 16 times for 96 yards and a score.
- O'Neil notched the coffin corner distinction with four punts pinning the Blue Devils inside their own 20-yard line.
- Each team was perfect on the day in the red zone. The Blue Devils went 4-4 with 3 touchdowns and a field goal, while the Builders were 6-6 with 5 touchdowns and a field goal.
- Ibezim led Fork Union defense with 12 tackles and a forced fumble. For the Apprentice School, Deveron Lucas notched 9 tackles and a pair of pass breakups.
The Builders will wrap up their season next Saturday, November 7th, as they play a 1 p.m. game at Webber International (Babson Park, Fla.). The Warriors lead the all-time series 7-0 and took last season's November 8th meeting 31-6.