LEWISBURG (WVDN) – The Greenbrier East Spartans suffered a 49-21 loss to the Woodrow Wilson Flying Eagles on Friday, Sept. 2 in a clash of rivals at Spartan Stadium in Fairlea.
The stands were packed for the contest, but the home field advantage was not quite helpful enough for East who struggled to stop the run for the second week in a row.
The Spartans did get off to a little better start in this one compared to their opening week. The Eagles took the ball first and just like against Point Pleasant, they fumbled on the drive (Matt Moore coughed it up) and Chris Sinclair pounced on it for the Spartans.
And the Spartans capitalized.
On the ensuing possessions second play, quarterback Monquelle Davis found Lucas McCallister for a nice 13-yard gain that set up first-and-goal at the 4-yard line. Ian Cline scored the very next play from four yards out and the Spartans took a 7-0 lead with 8:41 left in the first quarter.
The Eagles seemed poised to answer and drove down the field behind Moore and quarterback Jay Jones, but they fumbled again, this time inside the East 10-yard line and McCallister scooped it up for the Spartans and got the ball back to his offense.
However, East (0-2) could not muster up any offense and Noah Dotson was forced to punt from the back of his own end zone, and he got off a 42-yarder, but set the Eagles up in good field position.
Moore started with a couple good runs. Then, Leon Smith picked up nine yards. After a couple good Tylai Kimble runs, Darmonte Mitchell broke free on a 4-yard touchdown run that tied the contest at 7-7 with just 53 seconds left in the opening quarter.
Woodrow (2-0) would strike again early in the second when Jones capped off a 5-play, 82 yard drive with a 20-yard TD scamper. That put the Eagles lead at 14-7 just a couple minutes into the second quarter.
The Spartans turned it over on downs on the ensuing drive, a drive that got deep into Beckley territory before the Eagles ended it.
That seemed to be when East lost control of the momentum, and ultimately, the game.
Mitchell decided at that point to take the game over when he broke through to the second level and scored on a 67-yard run, and gave the Eagles a comfortable 21-7 lead with 4:09 left in the first half.
But unfortunately for East, he still was not finished.
Mitchell later scored on a 52-yard run with just over a minute left until halftime as Beckley took a commanding 27-7 lead into the break.
If there was a silver lining for Spartan fans, it was that this team does appear to be resilient.
After Moore scored on a TD run early in the second half that gave Beckley a 35-7 advantage, the Spartans could have held their heads and left the field, but they did not. They actually battled and kept battling with everything they had.
Davis had a long 50-yard pass completion to Jake Pate that eventually set up Cline’s second score of the night, a 5-yard run that cut the Beckley lead to 35-13, and later in the game, Cline scored on a 38-yard burst. All good signs for the Spartans at least from an offensive standpoint.
The unfortunate thing is they just could not stop or slow down the Woodrow Wilson running game. Mitchell added two more long touchdowns as Beckley celebrated their victory in a hostile environment.
Cline led the Spartans with 15 carries and 68 yards. He scored all three of the Spartan touchdowns.
Pate was named McDonald’s player of the game. He caught three passes for 73 yards and was all over the field on the defensive side. Davis threw for 171 yards.
Beckley racked up 567 rushing yards and seven touchdowns and attempted just one pass the entire game.
Mitchell had 19 carries, 276 yards and scored five touchdowns. Moore had 91 yards and a score.
The Spartans will look to regroup this week before hitting the road this Friday, Sept. 9 to face Robert C. Byrd.