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East Forsyth builds lead, then withstands Davie County rally

By Brian Pitts

For the Salisbury Post

KERNERSVILLE — East Forsyth lost Ahmani Marshall, a senior running back and Wake Forest commitment, to an injury Oct. 11 and he’s expected to miss six weeks.

No matter. The Eagles have a stockpile of talent in the backfield, and Robbin Smith, Chris Chaplin and Ty’Shaun Lyles, among others, ran all over visiting Davie County on the way to a 49-35 win here Friday night.

Davie sophomore Tate Carney was a warrior in defeat, amassing 266 rushing/receiving yards and scoring all five touchdowns for the War Eagles, who fell for the second week in a row.

The night began with a four-way tie for first in the Central Piedmont Conference; it ended with West Forsyth and Glenn tied for first at 3-1 and Davie (5-5 overall), Reagan and East Forsyth (8-2) tied for second.

Davie struck first, after East’s 17-yard punt to the East 36. Six Carney runs later and the first of five extra points by kicker Willy Moure, the War Eagles had a 7-0 lead.

But East responded with 27 points in the last 13 minutes of the half. It used seven straight runs to cover 95 yards, tying the game at 7-7. Then the Eagles went 57 yards in three plays, taking a 14-7 lead before completing their first pass of the night.

Davie retaliated with a scoring drive. Nate Hampton’s 12-yard scramble on third-and-9 and his 23-yard completion to Jack Reynolds to the East 3-yard line set up Carney’s 1-yard plunge from the Wildcat formation. The score squared the contest at 14-14.

But Davie never could slow down East’s mighty ground game. Eight of nine plays during East’s 65-yard drive were run plays, and Jamison Warren scampered 19 yards to the end zone on his first carry of the game as East took a 21-14 lead.
The way the first half ended was a punch in the gut to Davie. On fourth-and-25, Lyles rolled right to buy time and found Warren in the middle of the end zone for a 27-yard TD with only 14 seconds on the clock. It was 27-14 after Davie blocked the PAT.

The second half began in brutal fashion for the War Eagles, who allowed a 98-yard kickoff return by Warren, who broke tackles to get free down the middle of the field.

In a span of 4:11, it went from 14-14 to 35-14 in East’s favor.

To its credit, Davie rallied to make things interesting. Carney broke a 48-yard run, then scored from 11 yards out to make it 35-21.

Lyles was about to score for East on a QB keeper, but he fumbled before crossing the goal line and Davie’s Caleb Bowling recovered.

After Davie failed to capitalize on East’s lone turnover, the Eagles moved 64 yards on 12 straight runs and added a two-point conversion to go ahead, 43-21.

Carney kept Davie alive, running for 16, 10 and eight yards before scoring from the 1. With 10:23 to play, Davie was within 43-28.

Davie’s defense forced a punt, an East defender committed pass interference on third down and Carney capped a 67-yard drive from the East 1 to close the gap to 43-35 with 4:05 left.

The play of the game came when East faced third-and-7 from its own 26-yard line. A stop and Davie has a chance to complete an amazing comeback. Robbin Smith, though, broke several tackles, picked up nine yards and Davie was all but done as East went 6-for-7 on third-down conversions in the second half. Smith would score on a 25-yarder with 1:57 left to punctuate its third win over Davie in three years.

East piled up 29 first downs and 547 total yards. Smith (17 carries for 167 yards) and Chaplin (17 carries for 133 yards) paced its 455-yard rushing attack. Lyles chipped in 70 rushing yards before leaving with an injury as East averaged 8.5 yards per run.

Davie moved the ball well enough to collect 27 first downs and 396 yards of offense. Carney racked up 195 yards on 29 carries, had seven catches for 71 yards and averaged 7.3 yards per touch.

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