Darlington implodes in second half and loses to Bulldogs on the road
By Drake Horton
BENNETTSVILLE – It was another game and another loss for the Darlington Falcons this past Friday against the Marlboro County Bulldogs.
After a strong showing in the first half, three straight turnovers and an injury at quarterback led to the Falcons wilting away, losing 41-6.
“You know its 13-6 to start the third quarter, we get the ball, felt well about ourselves, and the defense had played excellent,” Darlington head coach John Jones said. “We sputtered in the first quarter on offense, we got things going in the second quarter on offense and started to have a rhythm and then had a miscommunication on a signal, we were supposed to run a stop route, the receiver runs a stop and go and the quarterback throws a stop route and the pick hurt and losing your quarterback on the next series because of a really bad missed call is even worse.”
The missed call that Jones was speaking of was clear for everybody to see except for the official standing right there some inexplicable reason and it resulted in the quarterback Brian Robinson being taken off in an ambulance.
“We threw the pick, didn’t get the ball up enough, he under threw it just a little bit, got picked and Peanut (Brian Robinson) was in pursuit over here on the sideline and got hit dead square in the back,” Jones said.
Following the miscommunication that resulted in the first of back to back interceptions, Marlboro County started on Darlington’s 15-yard line and it did not take long for the Bulldogs to find the end zone even if it was with some controversy as well.
On third and goal from the Falcons’ eight-yard line Marlboro County quarterback Elijah Blair connected for what was called an 8-yard touchdown even though the Bulldogs’ wide receiver looked to be down at the 2-yard line.
Following that score, Robinson threw his second straight interception while also getting injured on the play. With the football and momentum, Marlboro County marched right down the field and Blair threw for another touchdown, this one from 7 yards out all while having three Falcon defensive players draped over him increasing the lead to 28-6.
Down by 22 and down to its fourth string quarterback Darlington had to adjust its offense to basically run only and the Bulldogs were able to time it up, shutting down all of the Falcons’ running backs.
After Robinson’s injury, the Falcons’ offense had one fumble, which happen on the first drive capping off the three straight turnovers in the third quarter to go along with three straight three and outs in the fourth quarter.
The Bulldogs added two more score in the fourth quarter, a 16-yard touchdown pass from Blair and14-yard run from Jacardo Riggins.
For as bad at the second half was for the Falcons, the first half was probably the best half Darlington had played all year in the region.
Darlington caught Marlboro County sleeping twice, recovering two onside kicks, the first coming on the opening kickoff of the game of the game and the second following the Falcons lone score, a two-yard touchdown run by Javorius Williams with 1:41 left in the second quarter.
The Falcons drop to 0-7 on the year, 0-4 in the region.