Skeen, Spartans run wild over Eagles

Central Davidson's Levi Bruff is upended by East Davidson quarterback Austin Wallace after Bruff intercepted Wallace's pass in the third quarter of their game Friday night. (Photo by Donnie Roberts/The Dispatch)

THOMASVILLE | The East Davidson band made a grand entrance into the stadium Friday night, preparing its crowd for homecoming.

Then Saig Skeen and Central Davidson drummed the Golden Eagles.

Skeen had five carries for 178 yards and three touchdowns — in the first 10 minutes — to guide the Spartans in a 54-14 pasting of the Eagles. Skeen finished with 268 yards and five TDs on nine carries, and had a 92-yard scoring run wiped out by a penalty, as Central could simply do no wrong.

“Thanks to my offensive linemen, I got all the yards I had,” Skeen said. “A big thanks goes out to those guys; those seven, counting the tight ends.”

The blockers weren’t limited to those seven, in all honesty. The Spartans’ money play was a sweep right to Skeen, and quarterback Nathan Dennis pivoted around as a lead blocker after most of the pitches. On the long touchdown runs, Dennis and Skeen would fall in behind a wall of blockers, and Skeen was never touched by an Eagle defender.

In addition to the wild night on the ground for Central — the Spartans ran for 431 yards as a team — everything went right on defense and special teams. Central’s secondary came up with five interceptions and did not allow a completed pass, and the kickoff team recovered two accidental onside kicks that squirted oddly off the foot of kicker Trevor Nanney.

“It was just our night, it seemed like,” Central coach Brad Morton said, in an understatement. “Everything we did seemed to work, and everything they did in the first half just didn’t go right.

“Everybody has those kinds of nights. But I was really proud of the way our kids played, especially in the first half.”

Indeed, there was plenty to cheer about for the visitors. Skeen rolled in from 67 yards out on the second play from scrimmage, then Nanney’s kickoff bounced off an East Davidson player and Dalton Fletcher pounced on it. Josh Moore, who finished with 92 yards and two TDs, then had a 50-yard touchdown run called back on a holding penalty. It didn’t matter, as Skeen broke free from 30 yards out moments later to make it 13-0 with 8:30 still left in the first quarter.

East picked up two first downs on its first possession, but stalled at the Central 40 and had to punt. Skeen came up big again, this time on a 77-yard romp on the second play. With less than nine minutes elapsed, the Spartans led 20-0 and things didn’t look good for the home team.

“When you get so many people committed to the line of scrimmage, so they can’t grind it out, you’re susceptible to long runs,” East coach Bryan Lingerfelt said. “That’s what happened several times tonight. And we couldn’t really do anything to sustain anything on offense.

“Coach Morton and his defensive staff did a great job, they shut us down pretty good. We just didn’t have anything go good for us in the first half. And they really took advantage.”

Nanney squibbed another kickoff into a hole in the Eagles’ return team, and this time Jacob Owen raced in and recovered it. Three plays later, Skeen took another sweep left and rumbled 29 yards to make it 27-0 with 1:10 left in the first quarter.

Moore, Skeen and Desmond Mabe tacked on touchdown runs in the second quarter for a 47-0 cushion at the break. Moore extended the lead to 54-0 with a 1-yard run in the third, before Nathan Campbell got East on the board with a 12-yard touchdown run early in the fourth. Ronnie Tineo capped the scoring for the Eagles with a 1-yard run in the last minute, then added a 2-point conversion run.

Notes: Michael Ramos led the Eagles, who dipped to 0-3 in the Central Carolina Conference, 2-7 overall, with 132 yards rushing on 20 carries … Will Ramsey had two interceptions for the Spartans, who moved to 1-2 in the CCC, 4-5 overall, and Chris Pompey, Chris Moore and Levi Bruff intercepted one pass each … Brooke Smith was named homecoming queen, and Taylor Booze was named homecoming king … the loudest cheer of the night from the home crowd came when the band, which put on an amazing show, broke into the final stanza of “Amazing Grace’ … Central visits Lexington next week, while East travels to West Davidson.

Jason Queen can be reached at 249-3981, ext. 220 or