Prep Football: Davie 24, Mount Tabor 7
By Brian Pitts
MOCKSVILLE - Davie County entered last night's high-stakes battle against visiting Mt. Tabor facing two obstacles. Not only had Tabor been a thorn in Davie's side for years, the War Eagles were searching for offensive answers.
Davie's response was above everyone's expectations. The War Eagles were almost flawless. The offense made a remarkable turnaround, the defense was at usual form and the result was a 24-7 victory that kept them in the race for at least a share of first. The loss all but broke Tabor's back.
After losing eight of nine to Tabor since '03, Davie (7-2 overall) improved to 2-1 in the Central Piedmont Conference. Tabor fell to 4-4, 1-2.
"I saw a look in their eye Monday," an ecstatic Davie coach Doug Illing said. "There was a lot of determination in their faces, and they weren't going to let that (West Forsyth loss) get them down and turn them off. It just inspired them more. This gives us confidence that we can play with the best of them."
Davie's offense was inept in the two losses (14-7 to West Rowan, 13-10 to West Forsyth). Illing went back to the drawing board, moving Cade Carney from running back to quarterback and moving A.J. Blaskievich from defense to running back. Churning behind an o-line that was bent on making amends, Carney (153 yards) and Blaskievich (88) left Tabor's defense befuddled.
Davie jumped ahead 14-0, led 14-7 at the break and broke Tabor's spirit in the third quarter.
"We thought it was a good 1-2 punch," Illing said. "With Cade at running back, it's kind of a one-way read for the most part. We knew A.J. could do it."
The War Eagles came out like gangbusters. Sparked by Devon Parks' 42-yard kickoff return, they marched 51 yards for a 7-0 lead. That was impressive considering Tabor had not allowed a point in nine quarters. On Davie's second series, it went 64 yards in 10 plays for the 14-0 advantage.
Carney, who scored all three TDs, answered questions as a passer, completing four of seven for 50 yards without an interception. He came in 0 for 8 passing.
"That's what we've got to do," Illing said. "Their linebackers were coming in an all-out blitz every time, and (tight end Paul Folmar) was open in the middle. Cade doesn't have to throw it far. He's just got to pinpoint it. As long as we can do that, we can keep people honest."
One of the signature defensive plays for Davie came in the third. Parks blocked Tabor's 32-yard field-goal, preserving the 14-7 lead.
Fired up, the War Eagles produced a 10-play, 72-yard drive that put them in firm control at 21-7. The haymaker to the Tabor jaw came three plays after that TD. Caleb Mathis intercepted Rae Brown and returned it 24 yards to the Tabor 30. Woody Parrish stretched the margin with a 28-yard field goal.
Sam Nesbit iced it with a late interception.regular season.