By MICHAEL ALEXANDER, Staff Photographer | Published October 18, 2007
Our Lady of Mercy High School lost its first football game in nearly a month to what head coach Bryan Pinabell described as “the best team we have played thus far,” Eagles Landing Christian Academy of McDonough, 45-22.
ELCA’s quarterback, Wes Carter, scored on a five-yard run during the team’s initial drive; however, they failed on the two-point conversion. During Mercy’s first possession they fumbled on their own 29-yard line and ELCA capitalized on the costly turnover with a 34-yard touchdown pass. The point after attempt was no good, which made the score 13-0. ELCA scored its third touchdown and extra point with 1:13 left in the first quarter to go up 20-0.
After creating a big hole for themselves, Mercy made their first effort to dig their way out on a five-yard run by junior running back Christian Willis. The Mercy defense held off two ELCA pass attempts on the five-yard line with the help of senior defensive lineman Patrick Silloway’s interception. Mercy worked their way down the field and completed the drive when quarterback William Pearl scampered 15 yards to the corner of the north end zone for a touchdown. With 4:53 left in the second quarter and trailing 20-14, that would be as close as Mercy would get. ELCA scored another touchdown before the half to go up 26-14.
During halftime Our Lady of Mercy celebrated its homecoming and the return of its alumni. Seniors Dominique McDermott and Kelly Tolcher were crowned homecoming king and queen, respectively.
ELCA went on to score three more touchdowns in the second half. Mercy put its final score on the board with a 63-yard touchdown pass from Pearl to running back Jarrell Bankhead. Pearl threw a pass to wide receiver David Goemaere to complete the two-point conversion. Pearl finished the game with 47 rushing yards and 271 passing yards in the loss. Willis led the team in rushing with 61 yards on nine carries. Willis and his teammates Bankhead and Will Simmons each had eight solo tackles to lead the defensive effort.
Mercy (3-3) heads to Alpharetta to face Mt. Pisgah Christian School (3-3), Friday, Oct. 19.
Blessed Trinity, Roswell, got back on track with a 24-0 win over Riverwood High School, Atlanta. Junior running back Sam Burkhalter led the offense with 289 yards rushing on 20 carries and three touchdowns. His longest touchdown was an 87-yard run in the first quarter. Linebackers Matt Maloney and Zach Hegetschweiler and defensive back Jake Skole, all seniors, led the defensive squad in tackles. Blessed Trinity (4-2) takes on Westminster School, Atlanta (5-1), Friday, Oct. 19.
Holy Spirit Preparatory School, Atlanta, currently has a three-game winning streak after a 31-0 defeat of Monroe Academy, Forsyth. Holy Spirit is averaging 33 points per game in their last three victories, while the defense has shut out two opponents and held another to seven points. Holy Spirit (4-2) goes to Newnan where they will play The Heritage School (2-4), Friday, Oct. 19.
Marist School, Atlanta, upped its record to 5-1 with a 45-10 victory over Stone Mountain High School. Marist racked up 394 yards in total offense. Senior running back Kevin Lanier led the rushing attack with four carries for 77 yards and two touchdowns. Five of Marist’s six touchdowns came on the ground, but senior wide receiver Will Darby caught a 16-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Cooper Taylor in the second quarter. Marist goes on the road to face Lakeside-DeKalb High School (1-5), Friday, Oct. 19.
Pinecrest Academy, Cumming, capped off their homecoming celebration with a 37-13 defeat of Westminster Christian Academy, Watkinsville. Senior running back Tom Zigtema scored two rushing touchdowns and one receiving touchdown on the night. Quarterback Michael Metz ran in a touchdown from 26 yards out and running back Rick Thompson also added another touchdown run from 22 yards out. The defense also recorded a safety late in the fourth quarter. Pinecrest (5-2) travels to Eatonton to play region opponent Gatewood School (5-2), Friday, Oct. 19.
St. Pius X High School, Atlanta, lost on the road to Cedar Grove High School 20-17. Sophomore running back Cole Moon led Pius in rushing with 128 yards on 22 carries. Junior running back Jonathan Carter also had 80 yards on nine carries. Linebacker Greg Foster (17 tackles), defensive back Patrick Nilan (12 tackles) and defensive lineman Javod Sewell (10 tackles) led the defense in the close contest. St. Pius (4-2) will host Southwest DeKalb High School (3-3), Friday, Oct. 19.