By Max Yavel
The Red Devils opened up their 2014-2015 season last Friday night as they were defeated 14-7 in a tight game against the Central High School Bears. The game consisted of just one half of football with no live special teams but was still a spirited contest nonetheless.
The Devils’ defense stood strong on the team’s first possession as they stopped several rushing attempts by the Bears before forcing a turnover on downs. The Devils’ first offensive possession of the season didn’t fare any better, though, as they failed to get any momentum going and were forced to punt the ball away. After a slow start to the game Central opened up the scoring with a long touchdown run to take the lead 7-0 with 4:48 remaining in the first period.
The Red Devils’ next possession started off sluggishly as Senior Paul Battles was sacked for a one-yard loss. On the next snap, Battles nearly connected on a deep pass to Justice White that barely slipped through the Junior’s fingers. The Devils’ would lose the ball via a fumble two plays later, which gave way to fantastic field position for the Bears.
Despite starting at the Red Devils’ 15 yard-line, the Bears were unable to capitalize as they failed to advance the football. After the Devils’ defense forced another turnover on downs their offense finally got going with a few big plays of their own.
On first down Battles completed a short pass to Malik Latson who then stretched the play into a long gain as he darted down the field for 20+ yards. After a short run and two incomplete passes, Battle threw a long touch down pass down the sideline to Justice White who leaped over a Bears’ defensive back to secure the ball in midair, tying the game at 7-7 with 6:09 remaining in the second quarter.
Williston’s next defensive possession resulted in a pair of impressive pass deflections by defensive backs De’Vonta Smith and Andre Reynolds, that forced the Bears into yet another punt. Unfortunately, the Devils would lose possession on a fumble a few snaps later on a rushing attempt up the middle.
The Bears’ offense responded by leading an offensive drive that spanned three minutes and ended with a long touchdown pass along the sideline to take the lead 14-7 with 1:39 to go in the game. That would prove to be the final score of the game as the Red Devils were unable to make anything happen with their final offensive possession.
The Red Devils take on P.K. Yonge Friday night in Gainesville. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m.