Special teams play lifts EHS past Greenville


GREENVILLE — The play of Eaton’s special teams unit lifted the Eagles to a 24-19 season-opening win over Greenville on Friday, Aug. 25.

The Eagles blocked two punts, returned one for a touchdown, converted all three extra-point attempts and connected on a 28-yard field as Eaton snapped a brief two-game losing skid to the Green Wave.

“I thought our special teams played great. Anytime you block two punts, scoring on one of them, you have pretty good chance to win the ball game,” Eaton coach Brad Davis said. “Also, offensively we only had a few penalties and did not turn the football over.”

The game was historic for Eaton as Anna Black become the first female football player in school history to score for the Eagles.

“Anna did an awesome job converting all of the PATs and the FG at the end of the first half,” Davis said.

The night started off well for Greenville as the Wave marched into Eaton territory on its opening drive. However, the drive stalled at the Eagles’ 33-yard line and the Wave turned the ball over on downs.

“Greenville got us on our heels a little bit. I think it took a few plays to adjust to their size and scheme and realize it’s not our scout team anymore,” Davis said. “But, we were able to hang in and force a turnover on downs.”

Eaton also moved the ball well on its first drive and scored on a 22-yard pass from Ryan Venable to Zac Schmidt to go up 7-0.

Greenville’s offense continued to move the ball on its second possession, but this time finished off the drive with a 36-yard touchdown pass from Paulus to Wood to knot the score at 7-7 with 3:06 remaining in the quarter.

The score remained tied until early in the second quarter when Skyler Straszheim blocked a Greenville punt and Seth Hodapp returned it 25 yards for a score, putting the Eagles back on top, 14-7.

Late in the quarter Greenville cut the deficit to 14-13 as Crist took a handoff 67 yards for a touchdown. The extra point was unsuccessful, though, keeping Eaton’s lead intact.

Eaton went into halftime up 17-13 as Black drilled a 28-yard field goal as time expired. The drive was kept alive by key receptions from Chip Parker and Aaron Tolliver.

Eaton added to its final during the first possession of the second half. The Eagles drove 65 yards with Caleb Puckett scoring on a 22-yard run to put the visitors up 24-13.

Greenville quickly responded on its next possession with Paulus connecting with Wood for a 30-yard score to reduce the deficit to 24-19 with 3:45 remaining in the third quarter.

However, that’s as close as Greenville was able to get. The Wave was driving late in the fourth quarter, but an interception by Puckett sealed the victory for Eaton.

“Overall, pleased with our effort,” Davis said. “However, too many missed assignments up front with our offensive line and certainly with our defense. We have been focusing so much on our run fits throughout camp and limiting big plays defensively. So, obviously we still need some work there. But, its nice to get a win and the mistakes we saw are coachable and fixable.”

Puckett rushed 34 times for 174 yards and a touchdown. Venable completed 14 of 16 passes for 141 yards and touchdown. Schmidt had four reception for 50 yards and Tolliver caught four passes for 48 yards.

The Eagles return home to host St. Henry Friday, Sept. 1. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

(Editor’s note: Greenville Daily Advocate contributed to this story)

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Eaton’s Anna Black kicks a field goal as time expires in the first half of the Eagles 24-19 win over Greenville on Friday, Aug. 25. Black became the first female football player in school history to score points in a game.
http://www.registerherald.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/41/2017/08/web1_EATON-FB-VS-GR-4.jpgEaton’s Anna Black kicks a field goal as time expires in the first half of the Eagles 24-19 win over Greenville on Friday, Aug. 25. Black became the first female football player in school history to score points in a game.

http://www.registerherald.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/41/2017/08/web1_EATON-FB-VS-GR-5.jpg

Eaton’s Caleb Puckett finds running room during the Eagles 24-19 win over Greenville on Friday, Aug. 25. Puckett rushed 34 times for 174 yards and a touchdown.
http://www.registerherald.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/41/2017/08/web1_EATON-FB-VS-GR-2.jpgEaton’s Caleb Puckett finds running room during the Eagles 24-19 win over Greenville on Friday, Aug. 25. Puckett rushed 34 times for 174 yards and a touchdown.

http://www.registerherald.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/41/2017/08/web1_EATON-FB-VS-GR-3.jpg
Anna Black becomes first female to score in program history

By Eddie Mowen Jr.

emowen@registerherald.com

Reach Eddie Mowen Jr. at 937-683-4056 or on Twitter @emowen_RH