By CARSON FANT / For Franklin Home PageThe Siegel Stars scored 28 unanswered points in the second quarter to break open a close game on their way to a 53-7 season-opening win over the Franklin Rebels.
Photos by ANDREW COLLIGNON for FHP
Siegel explodes in second quarter to spoil new coach’s opener
The Siegel Stars scored 28 unanswered points in the second quarter to break open a close game on their way to a 53-7 season-opening win over the Franklin Rebels.
Siegel scored right off the bat while many fans were finding their seats. On the first play from scrimmage, Stars quarterback Brent Stockstill faked a handoff and found Tae Martin deep down the middle of the field for an 80-yard touchdown. Stockstill ran in the two-point conversion to give the Stars an 8-0 lead 15 seconds into the game.
Franklin, though, bounced back quickly. Sophomore quarterback Joe Critchlow marched the Rebels 77 yards in nine plays. Critchlow capped off the drive when he avoided the rush and found classmate Garrison Mathews all alone in the end zone for a 24-yard touchdown. Joe Defatta’s extra point brought the Rebels back within one at 8-7.
Siegel drove 73 yards on their next drive but had to settle for a field goal when they stalled near the goal line. After a three-and-out by the Rebels offense, the defense came up big when they recovered a fumble at Siegel’s 26-yard line. The Rebels, though, were unable to score, missing a field goal wide left.
The Stars hit their stride offensively after that, scoring touchdowns on four of their next five possessions. Running back Denzel Harding rushed the first two in, from five and two yards out, respectively.
Martin broke the game wide-open midway through the second quarter with an electrifying 73-yard punt return for a touchdown. He caught his second touchdown pass from Stockstill with 1:37 left before halftime.
|Video interview with Coach Webb|
“They’ve got a great one-two-three punch,” Franklin first-year head coach Donnie Webb said of the Stars offense. “They’re a good football team.”
The Stars racked up 491 yards of offense. Stockstill completed 15 of 19 passes for 317 yards and two touchdowns. Martin caught both touchdowns and seven passes overall for 176 yards.
There were some bright spots for Franklin, namely the pitch-and-catch sophomore tandem of Critchlow and Mathews. Critchlow was 13 of 22 passing for 109 yards. Mathews caught five of those passes for 54 yards and a touchdown. The Rebels also got some good rushing from seniors Yameek Woods and Colton Morrison.
“I thought in the beginning we were really moving the ball,” Critchlow said. He added that the Rebels made some “simple mistakes” but that he expects the team to improve.
“We did some good things — a lot of bad things — but we did some good things,” Webb said of his young team. “That’s what inexperience is.”
Franklin travels to Hendersonville next week. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.