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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Offense carries PC to 30-6 victory over Diamond

Monday, September 12, 2011

Holding fast. Curtis Palmer throws a Diamond running for a loss on Friday night. Palmer, a senior for Pierce City, also scored on a 44-yard touchdown run. [Photo by Traci Osborn]
It was a game of offense. The score could have been much higher though there is no doubt the outcome would have been the same. Both the Pierce City Eagles (3-0) and the Diamond Wildcats (0-3) turned the ball over in the red zone on multiple occasions in a 30-6 win for Pierce City.

The Eagles threw two interceptions and lost three fumbles and had a kick-off returned for a touchdown.

Diamond also had two interceptions and had an interception and a fumble returned for a touchdown.

Cutting up field. Pierce City's Bo Vincent cuts up field during the first half of the Eagles' 30-6 victory over Diamond on Friday. Vincent accounted for 151 yards of total offense. [Photo by Traci Osborn]
Neither team had any trouble moving the ball against their opponent's defensive teams. There were 10 penalties during the game. Pierce City was penalized eight times for 80 yards. Diamond was penalized three times for 20 yards.

"We've got to find a way to get that fixed," said Eagles head coach Mac Whitehead. "We need to get that done. I told the guys it's time to grow up. We can't make any more excuses about being inexperienced."

Pierce City won the coin toss and elected to kick. The Wildcats marched down the field to the Eagle 24 yard line when a fumble was recovered by Cedric O'Hara, who ran back 82 yards for a touchdown. The extra point kick was good. The Eagles lead 7-0.

On the ensuing kick-off the Diamond kick-returner found a hole up the middle and returned the ball 75 yards for a touchdown. The extra point kick failed and Pierce City lead 7-6.

Diamond attempted an onside kick but it was recovered by Pierce City at their own 40. Consecutive six yard runs by Bo Vincent, O'Hara and Curtis Palmer set up the Eagles first big play, guards Zach Crouch and Logan Deems, center Madison Deems and tackle Jacob Smith blew a big hole in the Diamond defensive line and Curtis Palmer took the hand-off for a dive play that went 44 yards for the touchdown. The extra point kick was good and Pierce City went up 14-6.

Palmer missed having his third consecutive 100-yard rushing game by two yards, ending up with 98 for the game.

Diamond's next drive went nowhere. A tackle for a loss by Crouch, a two-yard gain and an incomplete pass lead to a Diamond punt. Pierce City took over on its own 40.

On their next drive the Eagles showed flashes of great play with a 31-yard run by O'Hara and a 14-yard pass by O'Hara to tight end Garren Cantrell. Costly mistakes, a personal foul, a tackle for a loss, a fumble that the Eagles recovered and a sack forced the Pierce City to punt.

Diamond again marched the ball down the field on some big runs up the middle of the Pierce City defense. The Wildcats also completed an 11-yard screen pass but a sack by Smith, a tackle for a loss by Palmer and a penalty forced the Wildcats to punt.

Pierce City took over on its own 35 after the punt. Bo Vincent had a nice run on the first snap, taking a pitch for 11-yards.

This drive stalled as Pierce City was intercepted at the Diamond 47.

Diamond moved the ball easily again to the Eagle nine yard line but a tackle for no gain by Caleb Lasswell and a sack by Smith for a big loss left the Wildcats in a third-and -long situation. The pass attempt was intercepted by Vincent and taken back for a touchdown. The two-point conversion attempt was good on a run by O'Hara and the Eagles went in at the half up 22-6.

The second half started with a personal foul on the kick-off by the Eagles, leaving them with a long field from their 20-yard line. Palmer ran for five-yards and then the Eagles struck downfield on a deep post. Great protection by the line allowed O'Hara to connect with Lasswell for a 75-yard touchdown. The two-point conversion was good on a run by O'Hara and the Eagles went up 30-6.

"Our defense bent but they didn't break," Whitehead said. "They came up with some big turnovers at key moments. Caleb Lasswell had a great game for us (135-yards) and we knew we were going to have to pass the football," he said. "The part of the season where we could just hand off to 31 (Palmer) is over. We need those big plays from other people."

Pierce City hosts Greenfield next Friday for their homecoming game. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

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