Eagles can’t capitalize on scoring chances in playoff defeat
— A pair of empty red zone trips in the first half eventually proved costly for the Bohemia Manor football team Friday night.
The Eagles were held off the scoreboard the entire night as they fell 19-0 to visiting Kent County in the 1A East Region Semifinals.
Bo Manor marched down field late in the opening quarter. A first-and-goal from inside the 10-yard line turned into a fourth- and-goal from the 23 after allowing consecutive sacks.
Another lengthy drive was halted when the Eagles fumbled at the Trojans 14-yard line with 4:27 left until halftime.
“We had two good drives in the first half. The first drive had two sacks, and then we had a fumble,” Bo Manor coach Joe Graf said. “We just had a couple of miscues earlier. We were driving the ball, doing what we do, we just couldn’t get it over the hump tonight.”
The two teams headed into the locker room in a scoreless tie, but it was the visitors that found their rhythm to the tune of 19 second-half points.
“I’ve got to give Bo Manor a lot of credit. They came out, they were running weak side on us, they were running double tights, they were using their size to their advantage. Luckily, we were able to make some stops and take advantage of opportunities in the red zone. If Bo Manor capitalized, it definitely could’ve been a different type of game,” Kent County coach Brendon Ireton. “I think our offense did a better job of controlling the clock in the second half. I think Bo Manor did a really good job of holding onto the possession in the first half and we were fortunate enough to do it in the second half.”
Kent County’s quarterback, senior Marcquan Greene, took over the game after halftime. He broke a scoreless tie with a 50yard touchdown run up the middle on a third-and-7 with 8:46 left in the third quarter.
Greene scored again on a 3-yard touchdown run with 3:25 remaining in the game to bring Bo Manor’s deficit to two scores. His second touchdown run was set up by a fourth-and-2 conversion in which he managed to pitched the ball to running back Arlington Johnson despite being wrapped up by an Eagles’ defender.
Bo Manor (7-4) lost a fumble on its ensuing possession, but blocked a Kent County (6-5) punt with 1:36 to play to retain a glimmer of hope.
The Eagles took over at the Trojans 29-yard line, but Greene intercepted a Bo Manor pass near the goal line and returned it approximately 100 yards to the opposite end zone to deliver a final nail in the coffin with 39 seconds remaining.
Graf had mentioned Greene as Kent County’s biggest threat prior to the game, but said the quarterback exceeded his expectations on the field.
“He was [better than expected]. We bottled him up for a majority of the game, but a player like that is able to get loose,” Graf said. “He’s the real deal.”
Though Graf’s first season as head coach of his alma mater ended with an opening round playoff loss, he did not lose sight of what the Eagles were able to accomplish.
“I couldn’t be more proud of my team, of the coaching staff — they do an excellent job. The coaches put in tremendous amount of hours for nothing, just to teach kids how to play football and play it the right way,” he said. “This is very memorable for us. We did something that the school hasn’t done for six years, and that’s be able to play a home playoff game for our fans.”
Bohemia Manor coach Joe Graf consoles his team after it lost to visiting Kent County, 19-0, in the 1A East Region Semifinals on Friday.