Escambia High Gators: Schedules and Varsity Game Summary

Escambia High remains unbeaten
Written by PNJ Sports writer: Brady Aymond
The Escambia Gators’ offense didn’t get to 700 yards this week.

In fact, the Gators didn’t even get halfway there.
But the offense didn’t need to because a much-maligned Gators defense had their backs.
A week after giving up 600 yards in a 70-54 shootout win over Rutherford, the Escambia defense came out with something to prove Friday night in the District 1-6A opener at Pine Forest.
And they ended that statement with an exclamation point, as Escambia (4-0, 1-0) forced five Pine Forest turnovers and beat the Eagles (0-4, 0-1) for the first time in a decade with a 24-7 win.
“Same defense we had last week,” Escambia coach Willie Spears said. “No disrespect to Pine Forest, but the two teams in Panama City (Mosley and Rutherford) are offensively better than these guys. Everybody kept asking ‘Are you worried about your defense?’ We played the two best offenses we’re going to play the (past) two weeks. That’s no disrespect to the rest of our schedule.
“Everybody said our defense couldn’t play. Somebody was wrong.”
After a scoreless first quarter, the Gators struck first in the contest when a grueling 92-yard drive was capped off by a 35-yard run by Danikeei Hollowell to take a 7-0 lead over the Eagles.
The drive consisted of 13 plays — all of them on the ground. Escambia converted two third downs on the drive, including one where they got Pine Forest to jump offsides.
It didn’t take long for the Gators to add to that lead, and this time it was the defense getting it done as Logan Walden came up and stripped Pine Forest tailback James Mayberry of the football and raced 34 yards to the end zone for a quick 14-0 lead for the Gators.
“I seen him running, and I saw the ball open and I just decided to take the ball and go,” Walden said. “(The turnovers were) huge, especially since our defense hadn’t been what we wanted it to be. With these five turnovers, it really has us going on a good route.”
Pine Forest settled down on its next possession and made it a game as they drove 80 yards in nine plays to cut the lead to 14-7 on a 33-yard touchdown pass from Tyrone Jones to Raymond Teamer.
“We got a little bit better, but we’re still making a lot of mistakes and they capitalized on the mistakes,” Pine Forest coach Jerry Pollard said. “You can’t win a football game turning it over five times. You have to be really, really good to do that, and we’re not to that point yet.
“They took the ball away from us for a touchdown. We gave up a long drive. We didn’t execute the way we wanted to as a team.”
After a scoreless third quarter, Escambia put the game out of reach with a 34-yard field goal by Emilio Maldonado.
Pine Forest tried to mount several comebacks in the final period, but the Eagles’ last six possessions of the game resulted in two punts, two fumbles and two interceptions.
The last interception came in their own red zone as William Beasley got his second pick of the game to ice it for the Gators.
“We studied hard, watched our scouting reports and just executed,” Beasley said. “We came into the game knowing we had to keep focused and keep our assignments.”

First Quarter
No scoring.

Second Quarter
ESC—Danikeei Hollowell 35 kick (Emilio Maldonado kick)
ESC—Logan Walden 34 fumble return (Maldonado kick)
PFHS—Raymond Teamer 33 pass from Tyrone Jones (Jordan McBride kick)

Third Quarter
No scoring.

Fourth Quarter
ESC—Maldonado 34 FG.
ESC—Hollowell 12 run (Maldonado kick)


1st 2nd 3rd 4th Score
Escambia

0

14

0

10

24

Pine Forest

0

7

0

0

7