The Clinton Dark Horses played a close first half in their game against East Bladen Friday night but fell apart in the second half as they were defeated by the Eagles 35-16.
The Horses were trailing East Bladen 14-0 for the majority of the first until the few minutes of the second quarter when they finally signs of life. They would score their first touchdown in the second quarter after a hard fought quarterback run from Kris Williams, were he barely stretched the ball past the goal line.The point after was good making it 14-7.
They didn’t stop there as Clinton would get another of its many first half turnovers in the final minute of the second quarter. A huge interception in Eagle territory which set up the Horses with a field goal attempt that was good putting the game at 14-10. This would end the first half action as the Horses carried the momentum into the locker room.
Clinton came out fired up as they pinned East Bladen behind the 2o on the open kickoff. The defense completely shutdown the two plays on the opening drive of the second half and were poised for a three and out. However, a third down missed tackle would lead to a huge yardage gain pass play for the Eagles. East Bladen rode the momentum of that play the rest of the drive as they scored putting them ahead 21-10.
The Dark Horses keep fighting as they scored the next touchdown of the half on a run play, they would fail on the two point conversion attempt making the game a close 21-16.
Just when Clinton seemed to gain some energy back a special teams flop on the kickoff following their touchdown put East Bladen deep into their own territory. This would set up an easy scoring drive for the Eagles putting them further ahead 28-16 with time winding down in the fourth.
The Horses continued to play hard but were unable to close the gap as East Bladen would go on to score again late in the fourth sucking the remaining life out of Clinton and ensuring their win 35-16.
Offensive rushing leaders for the Horses were Williams with 9 carries for 63 yards plus 2 touchdowns and A.J. Williamson with 8 carries for 57 yards. Williams was 3-6 on pass attempts for 37 yards.
Defensive leaders were Williamson with 14 tackles, Javiah Cruise with 11 tackles, Taylor Daniel with 10 tackles and Zion Autry with 10 tackles. Defense also had two interceptions one came from Trey Warren and the other from Hampton Brock.
The Horses start the season out 0-2 and their schedule isn’t getting any easier as they prepare for their first road game of the year against Northside next Friday.
Reach Sports Editor Michael Hardison at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter @SampsonInd.