By MacKenzie Bates
For the Forsyth County News
Fresh off a state championship, Milton wanted to pick right
up where it left off in region play a year ago.
The Eagles did just that Friday, doing all of their damage in the first half as they defeated West Forsyth 34-7 in both teams’ region openers.
Milton (3-3, 1-0 Region 5-7A) started the game run-heavy. Ahmad Junearick had five rushing plays in a 10-play, 68-yard opening drive that saw quarterback Devin Farrell breakaway on a 24-yard score to lead 7-0.
On the next possession, Junearick got the bulk of his 134 rushing yards on a 68-yard run to increase Milton’s lead to 14-0.
“We didn’t make some plays early,” West Forsyth head coach Shawn Cahill said. “We’ve got to get out of own way sometimes. When you don’t catch the ball and you give them a touchdown …you’re going to have a hard time winning those games.”
Things went from bad to worse for West Forsyth after Milton recovered an onside kick that led to a 56-yard touchdown pass from Farrell to Matthew Evert.
“We knew it was coming,” Cahill said of the onside kick. “We’ve got to be ready for those types of situations. We had the right call. We relaxed for a second, and that’s all it took.”
West Forsyth (1-5, 0-1 Region 5-7A) tried to take advantage of a muffed punt inside
Eagle territory that was recovered by Richie Mohr.
Three plays later, inside Milton’s 10-yard line, the Wolverines fumbled the ball that was picked up by Milton’s Jackson Slayton and returned 79 yards for a touchdown.
“When you’re going to potentially put points on the board and it goes back the other way … that’s a 10-point swing,” Cahill said. “Even if we kick a field goal in that situation, we’re feeling good about something. It was hard for our kids.”
The Eagles got their final score of the game on a 34-yard rush by Jackson McDonald.
Milton amassed 346 yards of total offense, with 249 of them coming on the ground.West Forsyth managed to avoid a shutout with a fourth-quarter touchdown pass from Drew Southern to Casey Cowart from 25 yards out. Cowart caught eight passes for 110 yards.
Cahill said one bright spot in this game was from Eli Orr. The senior linebacker had 11 tackles and an interception.
“I’m so proud of (Orr),” Cahill said. “This is his team right now. You watch a kid like that no matter the score, he just kept fighting. He made a lot of plays and had so much effort against a very good Milton football team.”
Despite being 0-1 in region play, Cahill said there’s plenty of reason to play. They host Forsyth Central for homecoming next week.
“They’ll come back to work on Monday and get out and fight,” Cahill said. “We’ll have a good week of practice and get ready for Central.”