Eagles succumb to tough Bessemer defense

Published 11:57 pm Friday, November 6, 2015

A stingy Bessemer Academy defense proved an inhospitable host to the traveling Fort Dale Academy as the Rebels shut out the Eagles 47-0.

Though the proven Rebels defense served as a difficult enough obstacle, a pair of early Fort Dale errors pinned the Eagles deep.

According to Fort Dale Academy head football coach James “Speed” Sampley, it was a pair of blunders that the Eagles never truly recovered from.

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“We started off by fumbling the kickoff and then throwing an interception, and that just got us down on ourselves,” Sampley said.

“Our kids played hard and gave it their all.  We moved the ball pretty good the first half, but we just couldn’t stop them.  They’ve got a really good football team.”

With a slow Fort Dale start and everything going Bessemer Academy’s way early on, the Rebels ran the score up to a 35-0 lead at the half, which proved too difficult a hurdle to overcome for the Fort Dale offense.

Despite the shutout, FDA quarterback Luke Taylor found more successes than failures through the air as the sophomore threw for 138 yards on 13 completed passes out of 25 attempts.

His favorite target of the evening was tight end Lance Powell, who reeled in five catches for 49 yards.

Stephen Hartley and Cody Parker led the Eagles defense with five tackles apiece, and Taylor also came down with an interception.

Though the loss marks the end of the 2015 Fort Dale season, Sampley said that the team and its returning members will still continue down the road to improvement in the offseason.

“We feel like we do things the right way at Fort Dale, and sometimes in life things just don’t go your way,” Sampley said.

“But you keep your head up and keep going.”