ARLINGTON — The Arlington Eagles defeated the Stanwood Spartans in the Stilly Cup on Friday, Sept. 20, in an energetic rivalry game ending in a 34-21 victory for Arlington.
“Well, we did a little bit on offense moving the ball and our defense played well in the first half,” said head coach Greg Dailer. “We had a little trouble in the second half moving the ball, and on our defense overall, especially in the third quarter when Stanwood played really well.”
The Eagles’ first offensive drive resulted in a 43-yard touchdown from Max Gray, and on the following drive, Gray powered past a line of Spartans for another 7-yard touchdown. The Eagles went 14-0 into the second quarter, where Micah Miller caught a 26-yard pass from Gray for the third touchdown of the night for Arlington.
“We will continue to use Max at quarterback, and continue with Cam [Scrimgeour] at quarterback as well,” said Dailer. “I just like that package with Max. He is such an explosive football player, and we did sort of the same thing with Skylor Elgarico last year.”
On the Spartan’s ensuing drive, a fumble gave the ball back to the Eagles. Saige Taylor recovered that fumble and returned it for a 20-yard touchdown — the third of the night, taking the Eagles to a 27-0 lead.
In Stanwood’s next possession, Connor Chitwood caught a 22-yard pass from quarterback Drew Wright, giving the Spartans their first touchdown of the night.
The teams went into halftime with a 27-7 score.
In the third quarter, the home team had more to celebrate as Stanwood’s offense rallied for two more touchdown runs, bringing them to within 6 points of Arlington’s lead. This isn’t the first time that the Eagles have had a great first half, only to be overcome by their opponent by the end of the game.
A late turnover in the fourth quarter gave the Spartans the ball again, and Arlington fans held their breath until Wright was sacked and the visitor’s stands buzzed with cheers as the Eagles took back the ball.
“It is our fourth Stilly Cup win in a row,” said Dailer. “Our outside linebacker Jon Rabourn played really well — he had a bunch of tackles — and Micah Miller had a really good game.”
Scrimgeour threw 33-yards to Gray, to take Arlington to the 12 yard line, and Jared Alskog ran in the last touchdown of the night, sealing the Eagles’ 34-21 victory and four-year tenure as Stilly Cup champions.
“We are getting better every week,” said Dailer. “We will fix our mistakes and continue to get better going forward.”
The Eagles face the undefeated Mount Vernon Bulldogs at home on Friday, Sept. 27, at 7 p.m.