Eamer nav­i­gates BB&N to win


Buck­ing­ham Browne & Ni­chols turned a lemon into lemon­ade yes­ter­day at Bel­mont Hill in a bat­tle be­tween two In­de­pen­dent School League pow­er­houses.

The Knights lost a fum­ble on the fourth play from scrim­mage, but in­stead of cow­er­ing back in their shells, they re­sponded with a dom­i­nant per­for­mance on both sides of the ball en route to an im­pres­sive 21-0 vic­tory over Bel­mont Hill.

“We knew we were up against it play­ing a very good foot­ball team,” said BB&N coach Mike Wil­ley af­ter his team im­proved to 1-1. “We talk a lot about re­act­ing, and some­thing bad hap­pened (fum­bling the ball), but it is more im­por­tant how you re­act af­ter some­thing goes wrong.

And the char­ac­ter of our guys af­ter it hap­pened was why we were suc­cess­ful.”

Fol­low­ing the early turnover, Bel­mont Hill (1-1) quickly drove in­side the Knights 10-yard line, when BB&N jarred the ball loose and re­cov­ered the fum­ble.

An­swer­ing the give­away with a take­away swung the mo­men­tum com­pletely to BB&N in the sec­ond quar­ter. Then, fac­ing a fourth-and-7 from its own 40, BB&N ex­e­cuted a per­fect fake punt to pick up the first down, set­ting the stage for a 14-play, 60yard drive that ended with quar­ter­back Ryan Eamer scor­ing on a 1-yard sneak. Eamer fin­ished by com­plet­ing 10-of-14 passes for 140 yards with a touch­down. He also ran for 80 yards with an­other score.

“We have con­fi­dence in our guys to make a play, and they did a good job today,” said Wil­ley said, whose Knights con­verted three fourth-down plays for first downs.

Bel­mont Hill re­sponded by advancing the ball to mid­field, but the BB&N de­fense (three forced fum­bles, six sacks) held tight and forced a punt. Bel­mont Hill had one more chance to score be­fore half­time, but Pa­trick Walsh’s 38-yard field goal at­tempt in the fi­nal sec­onds went wide right, and BB&N took a 6-0 lead into the break.

Af­ter the BB&N de­fense forced an­other fum­ble, the Knights duo of Devin Mar­rocco (31 car­ries, 103 yards) and Zack Cyr fol­lowed a stout of­fen­sive line and pushed BB&N deep into Bel­mont Hill ter­ri­tory. On fourth-and-goal from the 3, Eamer con­nected with Jay Sy­monds (six catches, 47 yards) to dou­ble the ad­van­tage with 6:36 left in the third quar­ter. Eamer passed TJ Maley for the two-point con­ver­sion and a 14-0 lead.

From there the BB&N de­fense took over. The Knights ha­rassed Bel­mont Hill quar­ter­back Mike Pi­azza (9-of-16, 75 yards) and lim­ited Duke Univer­sity-com­mit Jake Bobo to just four catches.

The Knights took a 21-0 fourth-quar­ter lead on a 2-yard run by Cyr be­fore their de­fense forced a third fum­ble to se­cure the win.

“Bel­mont Hill is a great pro­gram, but we did a great job get­ting it done and schem­ing it up de­fen­sively,” Wil­ley said.

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