By Chris Edwards
WOODVILLE – Friday night was likely a shock to many area high school football faithful followers, and proved that Coach Ty Robinson and his mighty band of Eagles are a force to be reckoned with.
It was Eagles vs. Eagles at Woodville’s Eagle Stadium, and in the visiting team corner, those Eagles happened to be the fierce ones of the Newton County variety, as in five-time state champion Newton Eagles.
What seems to be a great strategy by Coach Rob is playing heavy-duty opponents in the weeks leading up to district.
Last year, Woodville and Newton met in the season opener, and the results were not close to the Woodville team’s favor. This year was a different story, thanks to a successful two-point conversion on a play.
What both sides of the stadium witnessed was a great game, with solid plays on both sides of the ball for both teams and scoring close throughout. However, at the end of the night, it was a 23-22 razor-thin margin of victory in Woodville’s favor.
Woodville’s first score of the night came well into the first quarter with a 98-yard run from senior running back Jatavian Taylor on a Woodville first and two.
At the halftime mark, Woodville held a single-point lead, 15-14, which disappeared late in the third quarter courtesy of a Newton TD.
In the fourth quarter, Woodville was behind 22-15 with five minutes left on the clock. A blocked punt at Newton’s 11-yard line put things into motion for Woodville’s offense. A touchdown pass and a successful two-point attempt sealed the deal with the single-point victory for Woodville. Defensively, Woodville held off Newton in an attempt at another TD.
After all was said and done, one accolade Woodville achieved was to crack the 409Sports’ Football Top 5 rankings, which placed the Eagles up alongside football powerhouses like West Orange-Stark and Little Cypress-Mauriceville.
This Friday, the Eagles take on the winless Liberty Panthers on the road. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m.