Teams in this post:

Speedy Fayette County sends Blue Eagles packing


Fayette County High School's Kyle Nalls (8) against W.S. Neal's TyAnthony Alexander (19) during the third quarter Friday at Fayette County High School in Fayette. (Photo by Jason Harless)


 

FAYETTE | W.S. Neal High School is big and strong and takes a caveman approach to football.

The Fayette County Tigers are smaller, but they’re smart. They utilized their speed and quickness for big strikes Friday night to club W.S. Neal into extinction with a 34-6 victory in the second round of the AHSAA Class 3A state playoffs.

Fayette County (10-2) will visit Leeds next Friday for a quarterfinal matchup. The Blue Eagles finished the season 9-3.

Fayette County raced to a three-touchdown lead by the end of the first quarter on scoring dashes of 45 and 63 yards by quarterback Marcellus Redmond and a 42-yard touchdown strike from Redmond to Jatevin Madison.

“I thought we shocked them by being able to make those big plays,” Redmond said. “I can’t say enough about our line. The holes were there.”

The Blue Eagles lined up with five linemen and two tight ends bunched tight in front of a backfield made up of two more linemen, a fullback and a ballcarrier who took a direct snap and tried to steamroll Fayette County defenders.

“Coach told us they were going to be bigger and stronger than us and we were going to use our speed,” said linebacker Darnell Williams, who made 15 tackles.

The Blue Eagles finally put together a smash-mouth drive late in the first half, but Fayette County held strong on four plays to turn the ball over at its  own 15 to end the threat.

“That was as big a gut check as we have had all year,” Tigers coach Lance Tucker said.

“Our guys got after it. That’s the first time all year everybody has gone out and done their job. Our coaches did a fantastic job.”

W.S. Neal flexed its muscle to cut the Fayette County lead to 21-6 on a 4-yard touchdown run by Cameron Brooks to cap the opening drive of the third quarter, but Fayette County answered with a 34-yard touchdown run by Kyle Nalls. Jatrae Madison put the game away with a 33-yard fumble return for a score and then a game-sealing interception in the fourth quarter.

“We needed a big play,” said Jatrae Madison, who made 12 tackles, “to close the game out.”

W.S. Neal gained 211 yards on 52 carries and went 0 for 8 passing.

Redman ran for 142 yards on 12 carries and went 5 of 6 for 83 yards passing. Nalls gained 100 yards on 12 carries.

Reach Tommy Deas at tommy@tidesports.com or at 205-722-0224.