Eagles snag first varsity football win since 2015

 Hebron Christian School coach David Foster talks to his quarterback Braden Tripplet during the fourth quarter of Friday night’s game against North Sunflower Academy.
DTL Editor

Hebron Christian School didn’t field a varsity football team in 2017 and the 2018 return to varsity action appeared to be a struggle as the Eagles dropped the first seven games of the season, all by wide margins.

But that all changed on Friday.

In front of a home crowd, Hebron rushed for just shy of 400 yards in a 26-8 victory over the winless North Sunflower Academy Rebels (0-7) to secure their first varsity win since Nov. 6., 2015, when the Eagles defeated Marvell Academy 54-46.

Multiple Eagles broke off big runs, with Bradley Scott scoring his first of two touchdowns in the game on the ground on his way to 182 yards on 11 carries.

After a back and forth on defense throughout the rest of the first half, the Eagles went into the break with its first halftime lead of the season.

But right out of the gate, the Rebels would drive down the field to score on a long touchdown run, followed up by a successful two-point conversation to gain a 8-6 lead with 8:56 left to go in the third quarter.

The Eagles answered the Rebels’ score after a long run by running back Doug Loden to get the Eagles inside the Rebels’ 15 yard line.

Loden finished the game with 102 yards on the ground on nine carries, in addition to his 10 tackles on defense. Scott and Loden were also joined by Elijah Parrish, who had 10 carries for 66 yards and finished 1-for-1 passing for seven yards.

Quarterback Braden Triplett went on to punch the score in for the Eagles on the ground and then return on the next play to run in for a successful two-point play to give the Eagles a 14-8 lead.

The Rebels offense stalled on the ensuing drive and Triplett would strike again with a 61-yard touchdown pass to Loden. After an unsuccessful two-point attempt, the Eagles saw its lead extended to 20-8 with 2:22 left in the third quarter.

Likely the most exciting play of the night, though, came with less than six minutes to go in the fourth quarter when Scott broke off his biggest run of the night in the form of a 78-yard hustle for a touchdown to seal the deal for the Eagles.

“I’m proud of them and they needed that. I needed it, but it isn’t about me,” Hebron coach David Foster said following the win. “They’ve been working hard and it’s no fun to go winless. I told them before the game and after the game, you’re both winless and I want North Sunflower to get a win, just not on Friday night.”

When asked about the keys to the Eagles’ success on the ground, Foster praised his offensive line, consisting of Jackson Langley, Evin Pilkington, Jon McGrew, Gage Yeatman and Zack Corban.

“My lineman, that’s what did it,” Foster said. “We ran hard but those guys were making the blocks and that’s what I’ve been trying to tell them. I think they did that tonight.”

On the defensive side of the football, McGrew corralled nine tackles, while Yeatman and Langley both wrangled eight each.

Two-way player Triplett also pulled in two tackles and an interception in the late stages to help secure the win for the Eagles.

Next Friday, the Eagles (1-7) will travel to West Helena, Arkansas, to take on the DeSoto Thunderbirds (3-4).