NEW ALBANY — The Mount Vernon football team can look back on a year filled with several talented players being unveiled and many enjoyable victories. On Friday night, however, the Yellow Jackets closed out their season at one of the hardest places to win in the Ohio Capital Conference, New Albany.
Mount Vernon’s J.D. Orr led off the game in fine fashion with a long touchdown run, but the host Eagles scored 38 unanswered points to earn the victory, 38-14.
In the first quarter, the Jackets (5-5, 3-4 OCC) were backed up to their own 15 yard line when Orr, a sophomore, lit up the New Albany defense for 85 yards for a 6-0 lead. That lead did not last long, as the Eagles Leslie Anokye bettered Orr’s performance with an 88-yard TD run which, as well as halting any Mount Vernon momentum, gave his team a 7-6 lead.
“(Orr) is a good runner. What more can I say,” Mount Vernon head coach Anthony Naples told the News. “He outran the other guys. ... We had a good blocking scheme going, and he took it from there. It was really a combination of the two.”
Anokye came through for New Albany later in the period, scoring on a 2-yard run to increase the lead to 14-6. Emanuel Owusi-Antwi compounded the Jackets problems with a 5-yard TD run, and the Eagles finished the first quarter up, 21-6.
Mount Vernon’s offense continued to struggle in the second quarter, while New Albany kept driving. Alan Watson scored the first touchdown of the period on a 38-yard run for a 28-6 lead, and kicker Trey Quillin punched through a 26-yard field goal just before the half for a 31-6 lead.
“We just didn’t execute,” said Naples. “The weather was bad, and our offense wasn’t executing. We had our opportunities, and we couldn’t finish.
“Their offense is very fast. We knew that would be trouble. And when your defense isn’t disciplined, you don’t stop anybody.”
The Eagles began to use the clock in the third quarter, grinding out time-consuming drives despite not scoring. New Albany’s final score came in the fourth quarter, as Keith Emerson struck from 3-yards out to lift the lead to 38-6.
The Jackets did score once more, as Nick Rummell tallied on a 32-yard rush. Rummell also caught the two-point conversion pass from QB Greg Dennis, who filled in for the injured starter Greg Briggs.
“(Our seniors) were very hard workers,” said Naples. “You could see that all year long. They took steps to get better, and taught lessons to the other kids. It will help us moving ahead.”