Foundation Academy continued its strong start to the season following a near flawless victory in its 42-7 thrashing of The Master’s Academy Friday, Sept. 18.
The Lions (3-0) dominated on both sides of the ball, but it was the defense that set the tone throughout the entire game — racking up nine sacks and 16 tackles for loss, while holding the Eagles (1-1) to minus-40 yards of rushing offense and only seven points.
That defensive onslaught — which camped out in the Eagles’ backfield — was led by the usual suspects of Bryan Thomas (nine-total tackles, two sacks, three tackles for loss), Danny Stutsman (11-total tackles, one tackle for loss, one sack) and Edward Byrd (nine-total tackles, four tackles for loss, two sacks). Donavan Branch and Reggie Jean each added two-sacks apiece, and freshman Cole West grabbed a 25-yard pick-six in the second quarter.
“We dominated,” said Foundation head coach Brad Lord. “Our defensive back coach David Orlando did a great job prepping some young guys, and we have a few guys coming back of the injury list who are stronger. The O-line and D-line have been outstanding this year”
Though he dominated on defense, Stutsman opened up scoring for the Lions halfway through the first quarter on a 25-yard touchdown run off a direct snap. Stutsman would finish the night with 65-rushing yards on five carries with that touchdown, while picking up 64 yards and one touchdown through the air.
Early in the second quarter Travis Hutchinson continued his impressive start as the senior back picked up a 26-yard touchdown out of the wildcat to help put the Lions up 14-0. Hutchinson would lead all rushers in the game as he racked up 118 yards and a touchdown on 15 carries.
By the time halftime had arrived, the Lions were up by the comfortable margin of 35-7 — thanks to a late touchdown run by Thomas with less than a minute to go. The Eagles’ lone score came on a 59-yard toss from quarterback J.J. Baird to Jackson Vallery with 2:43 left in the half.
In the second half the Lions would induce a running clock almost immediately thanks to quarterback Tate Ewing hitting Eric Osborne for a 20-yard touchdown with 9:50 left in the third quarter to make it 42-7 in favor of the home side. Ewing finished the night with 101-passing yards and two touchdowns on 9-of-14 passing, while Osborne led the team with 68-receiving yards and a score.
James McGinn would take over at quarterback for the Lions in the final half, but from that point on it was about giving the backups some time to get work in in a game that was already over.
“We’re a good football team — we can be a great football team if we get rid of the stupid penalties,” Lord said. “But the boys have worked hard all summer and we’re a physical football team.”
The Lions will put their perfect record on the line next Friday — Sept. 25 — in a home matchup against Orlando Christian Prep (1-0) . Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m.