ELIZABETHTOWN — James Moore rushed for 123 yards and three touchdowns Friday, leading West Bladen to a 42-35 win over West Columbus in the first East Bladen Football Jamboree.
The scrimmage was the final tuneup for both the Knights and Eagles, as the regular season opens Aug. 19.
“I think things looked good,” said West Bladen coach Todd Pait. “The offense was clicking, but we need to fix the penalties.
“We wanted to concentrate on the run today and I think that will show on film,” he added.
The Knights scored on their first possession thanks to 33 yards rushing on three straight carries to open the scrimmage by Moore. Dayvon Swindell scored the first touchdown on a 1-yard run.
After holding the Vikings, West Bladen scored again, this time on a 17-yard run by Moore.
Neither team could score again in the first half and the Knights held a 14-0 edge.
West Columbus moved the ball to open the second half, but a Vikings pass was intercepted by Bryan Haro. West Bladen took advantage — scoring three times on its next drive, though the first two were called back by penalties. The touchdown that counted was a 15-yard pass from quarterback Weston Pidgeon to Swindell for a 21-0 lead.
The Vikings answered with a 35-yard touchdown run, but West Bladen needed just four plays to respond. Shaquille Johnson earned the touchdown with a 31-yard sweep that ended in the end zone for a 28-7 lead.
West Columbus then took advantage of the Knights jayvee, scoring three unanswered touchdowns that knotted the scrimmage at 28-28, but the West Bladen varsity returned things to order and scored on its final two possessions of the night. Moore got both touchdowns — the first on an 8-yard run, the second on a 3-yard scamper.
The Vikings added a late touchdown to tighten things up.
“The kids are picking up on a new offense and defense pretty well,” Pait said. “We’ll keep getting better as we go along.”
Along with Moore’s 123 yards and three TDs, the Knights got 44 yards on six carries from B.J. Drake; 37 yards on two carries from Johnson; and 45 yards on four catches by Swindell. Pidgeon was 6-for-13 for 55 yards through the air.
West Bladen opens the season at South Robeson.
Eagles whip South Rob
East Bladen whitewashed visiting South Robeson 21-0 in the first half of Friday’s first East Bladen Football Jamboree, then went on to hand the Mustangs a 35-7 thumping with a solid ground game and two touchdown passes by Quinton Bedsole.
Ethan Hines got things started for the Eagles, scoring on a 15-yard run on the hone team’s first possession. Shortly after, James Higgins found the end zone on a 40-yard run to give East Bladen a 14-0 lead.
Before halftime, Bedsole found Eian Hines for a 35-yard touchdown pass to close out the half.
South Robeson avoided the shutout with a 30-yard touchdown run to open the second half, but the Eagles answered with two unanswered scores — the first a 40-yard run by Eian Hines, the second a 35-yard pass from Bedsole to Eian Hines.
East Bladen nearly scored again, driving to the 1, but the drive fizzled there.
“I like the energy and excitement,” East Bladen coach Robby Priest said. “The defense started to pin its ears back and go, and we saw some progress in the passing game, which will be important for us to have.
“And I think our back ran well,” he added.
East Bladen opens the season Friday at home against South Columbus.
W. Curt Vincent can be reached by calling 910-862-4163.