EAST BEND — Slow starts have plagued the Surry Central football team throughout the 2015 season, and in Friday’s must-win contest against Forbush, the Golden Eagles were once again victims of an early deficit.
Forbush used a 14-0 lead in the first quarter to come away with a 35-27 victory on the Falcons’ senior night. The loss drops Surry Central to 3-7 and 1-3 in the Western Piedmont Athletic Conference, meaning the Golden Eagles hopes of a playoff berth have officially come to an end.
“I just really can’t explain (the slow start),” Surry Central coach Monty Southern said. “We talked all week about avoiding a flat start and coming out prepared, because it was their senior night and I told the team Forbush would play with some emotion, but we just didn’t have it. We came back and played well, but those first four minutes cost us the game.”
Surry Central got the ball first but was unable to do anything with it. Furthermore, the Eagles’ punt attempt was derailed with a bad snap and Forbush had excellent field position.
The Falcons capitalized on this opportunity with a Hunter Chapman touchdown that gave Forbush a 7-0 lead.
Surry Central couldn’t stop the bleeding and fumbled the ensuing kickoff, allowing Forbush to stretch its lead to 14-0 on a score from Zane Johnson.
The Golden Eagles settled in though and fought hard to put a little pressure on the Falcons. A 15-yard touchdown pass from Chandler Johnson to Riley Dockery made it 14-7, and Eric Ramirez leveled the score with a six-yard scamper into the end zone.
However, Forbush scored the game’s next two touchdowns, one late in the second quarter from Chapman and another end zone appearance from Johnson early in the third to stretch its lead back to two scores.
The Golden Eagles responded again, and made it 28-21 heading into the fourth quarter on a short touchdown run.
Both teams struggled to generate much offense in the final period. With a little over four minutes to play, Surry Central elected to punt the football back to Forbush instead of going for it on fourth down. The Golden Eagles had all three of their timeouts, and Southern was confident his defense could get the necessary stop.
But the Falcons smashed that belief on their first play. Chapman scored his third touchdown of the night, this time on a 68-yard run for a 35-21 lead.
Surry Central executed its two-minute drill to perfection on the next drive to give the Golden Eagle fans who made the drive to East Bend some last-minute hope. Johnson completed a couple of long passes, including a 40-yard throw to Noah Wilmoth, and Ramirez punched it in with 1:30 remaining. A missed extra point meant Forbush held a 35-27 lead.
The Golden Eagles were unable to recover the onside kick, and despite still having three timeouts, Forbush ran the clock out with one first down.
Surry Central will wrap up its season with Senior Night next week against West Stokes.