Offensive line keys Falcons to victory over Hawks
FRONT ROYAL – Central’s offensive line stole the show Friday night against Skyline.
The Falcons controlled the line of scrimmage throughout the game as they knocked off the Hawks, 34-13, in non-district football action.
Central running back Carston Shockey ran for 118 yards on 24 carries and four touchdowns to lead the way for the Falcons.
“Oh my goodness, my offensive line tonight. Our offensive line, they just did a tremendous job,” Shockey said. “Everybody did what they were supposed to do. Everybody just went 100 percent every play. Without them I couldn’t have done anything.”
Central needed only five plays to take the lead to start the game. A 15-yard penalty on Skyline on the kickoff moved the ball to the Central 49-yard line.
Central sophomore quarterback Zeb Dyer connected with Alonzo Charity for 11 yards on the first play. Then it was all Shockey and the Central offensive line. Shockey carried the ball four straight times, including a 7-yard touchdown run with 9:35 left in the opening quarter.
“The first touchdown was probably my favorite just because it was my first one, senior year,” Shockey said.
Central sophomore Kyle Clanton helped set up the next touchdown. He returned a Skyline punt 44 yards to the Skyline 16-yard line.
Shockey ran the ball four more times, the last one a 4-yard touchdown run, to give the Falcons a 14-0 edge with 6:14 left in the opening quarter.
The Hawks moved the ball on their next drive, but a fumble was recovered by Central at the Central 22-yard line.
On Skyline’s next possession the Hawks again fumbled the ball with a Central recovery.
The Falcons used nine plays to go 39 yards to extend their lead. Shockey scored on a 6-yard touchdown run for a 20-0 lead with 7:09 left in the first half.
“Offensive line did a lot of great things, opened up a lot of holes,” Central coach Mike Yew said. “They set the tone for the game. They executed. They communicated.”
A Central interception led to another score. Central went 69 yards on eight plays. Dyer connected with Charity for 13 yards, which set-up a 3-yard touchdown run by Shockey with 54 seconds left in the first half.
Skyline scored on the final play of the first half. Skyline quarterback Ryan Scott scrambled away from a couple Central defenders and found a wide-open Luis Garcia for a 55-yard touchdown to cut the lead to 27-7.
“Ryan made a play. He scrambled around there, and found Luis. That gave us life,” Skyline coach Heath Gilbert said.
The Hawks closed the gap even more early in the second half. Skyline’s Justin Jenkins recovered a Central fumble at the Central 14-yard line. Three plays later, Skyline’s Quentin Diggs scored from 4 yards out to cut the lead to 27-13 with 8:50 left in the third quarter.
After stopping Central on its next possession, Skyline moved the ball to the Skyline 48. However, a botched snap was recovered by Central’s Zach Abrams who scooped it up and ran 42 yards for the touchdown. To make things worse for the Hawks, Diggs suffered an injury on the play.
“Our defense did a tremendous job,” Shockey said. “Everybody did what they were supposed to and it showed.”
The Falcons ran for 215 yards on the ground. Dyer completed five passes for 52 yards.
One of the bright spots for Skyline was Scott. The junior ran for 145 yards on 15 carries and threw for 86 yards.
With a young team, Gilbert said he knows his team will keep improving.
“We’re not going to turn the ball over five times a game, that’s not going to happen. We’re going to play clean football games,” Gilbert said. “We’ve just got to keep battling and improve.”
Yew said he couldn’t have asked for a much better first game for his team.
“This is great. This is the start we needed,” Yew said. “Last year we lost a heart-breaker to Skyline. Coach Gilbert does a great job with his kids and his staff. They’re very well-coached. We knew we had to play well to bat them, and I think we beat a pretty good team tonight.”
Contact staff writer Tommy Keeler at 540-465-5137 ext. 168, or firstname.lastname@example.org
Falcons 34, Hawks 13
Central 14 13 7 0–34
Skyline 0 7 6 0–13
C: Shockey 7 run (Croom kick), 9:35
C: Shockey 4 run (Croom kick), 6:14
C: Shockey 6 run (Kick failed), 7:09
C: Shockey 3 run (Croom kick), :54
S: Garcia 55 pass from Scott (Scott kick), :00
S: Diggs 4 run (Run failed), 8:50
C: Abrams 42 fumble return (Croom kick), 3:57
First downs 12 12
Rushes-yards 47-215 31-211
Passing yards 52 86
Passing 5-8-0-0 9-16-1-1
Penalties-yards 3-15 5-50
Fumbles-lost 2-1 4-3
Punts-Avg. 1-41.0 4-40.2
RUSHING: Central: Shockey 24-118, Dyer 4-(minus 4), McAboy 11-56, Watson 7-43, Clanton 1-2. Skyline: Diggs 12-44, Scott 15-145, Fortney 3-22, King 1-(minus 1).
PASSING: Central: Dyer 5-8-52-0-0. Skyline: Scott 9-15-86-1-0, Smith 0-1-0-0-1.
RECEIVING: Central: Clanton 1-6, Charity 2-44, Houghton 1-6, Shockey 1-(minus 4). Skyline: Tasker 1-3, Garcia 4-69, digs 1-1, Hartzell 1-8, King 2-6.