The Eminence Warrior football team opened district play at Bracken County on Friday night and came away with a 36-8 victory as they continued to rack big yardage on the ground.
Shelby Armstrong rushed 18 times for 162 yards and DeMarcus Bailey ran nine times for 109 yards to lead the Warriors.
Armstrong also had an important interception return for a touchdown to give the Warriors some breathing room in a closely contested first half.
The Warriors scored first in the first quarter when quarterback Jalen Dixie carried the ball in from seven yards out after a sustained drive to open the game. Bailey ran in the two point conversion to make it 8-0.
“We’re tickled that we have turned that around,” coach Steve Frommeyer said. “The last couple of games we have done a better job of starting the game well. Earlier in the season we always seemed to struggle early in the game.”
Armstrong gave the Warriors a big boost with a big defensive play in the second quarter. He intercepted a pass on a crossing route and returned the ball 79 yards for a touchdown to give the Warriors a 14-point lead going into halftime.
Bracken County opened the third quarter with a long drive that culminated in a one-yard touch down run. They also converted their two-point attempt on a run to make it 14-8.
“We just took over the game from there,” Frommeyer said.
On the Warriors next possession Armstrong scored on a 37–yard run to give the Warriors a 20-8 lead.
The Warriors scored again to begin the fourth quarter on another Armstrong run, this time from 10-yards out. Hayden Hoofman ran in the two-point conversion to make it 28-8.
The Warriors final score came on a 55-yard run late in the game. Luke Satterly caught the conversion pass from Dixie to make it 36-8.
The Warriors shut the Polar Bears out the rest of the way to go 1-0 in district play.
“It was probably our best game of the season,” Frommeyer said. “The coaches felt like we really did not have one player that had a bad game. Our kids came to play from top to bottom. It was a district game and we got Bracken’s best shot and came out on top.
I’m really proud of our kids. Our offensive and defensive line played really well. I think we just wore them down.”
Shelby is really playing well right now. He’s never played better.”
Frommeyer saw two important keys to the game. “Having two guys go over 100 yards rushing is a big accomplishment,” he said. Both Shelby and DeMarcus ran really hard north and south. Jalen did a great job leading the team again. The kids have a lot of confidence in him.”
He was also happy with a trio of seniors on defense. “Hayden Hoofman, Clayton Rader and Cornelius Sanford were our top tacklers and played very well,” Frommeyer said. “They really stepped it up.”