Oak Mountain cruises to quarters

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 15, 2005

The Decatur Red Rockets came into Friday night’s Class 6A second round playoff game confident in their offense’s ability to move the ball. The Oak Mountain Eagles, however, had other ideas.

The Eagles held Decatur to 101 total yards of offense in the game on their way to a 30-3 trouncing of the Red Rockets. Oak Mountain’s defense helped earn the team a quarterfinals matchup with

high-powered Clay-Chalkville (10-2) at Heardmont Park Friday night.

The Eagles moved the ball with ease against Decatur under the direction of quarterback Richie Fordham. Fordham finished the game completing 11-of-15 passes for 100 yards and two scores.

&8220;Richie did one heck of a job tonight,&8221; head coach Jerry Hood said. &8220;I thought we had a great mixture on offense. We did a good job running the ball and hit some big passes tonight.&8221;

Fordham contributed another 49 yards on the ground and one TD in addition to running backs James Hope, Nick Anderson and Zack Fowler. The three backs combined for 170 yards of rushing with Anderson scoring on a 22-yard reception from Fordham in the first quarter and a five-yard run in the fourth. Fowler raked in a 17-yard touchdown pass from Fordham in the third quarter.

&8220;It’s an amazing feeling,&8221; Anderson said of his team’s play. &8220;It’s not just James, (Zack) Fowler and I. We wouldn’t be able to do this without the five linemen up front.&8221;

On defense, the Eagles caused three fumbles, recovering them all, and made Decatur go three-and-out five times, giving their offense excellent field position throughout the game.

Hood said the turnovers were crucial to the Eagles’ victory.

&8220;That’s when you win games in the playoffs,&8221; he said, &8220;when you’re able to get turnovers.&8221;

Oak Mountain’s move into the quarterfinals round is unprecedented for an Eagles team that two weeks ago was simply happy to be in the postseason.

&8220;This is the best team Oak Mountain has ever had,&8221; Anderson said.

The Eagles will have to play their best game this Friday as they play host to Clay-Chalkville, a team that steamrolled its way into the third round with a 28-14 win over the Mountain Brook Spartans Friday night.

&8220;Clay-Chalkville is on one heck of a roll,&8221; Hood said &8220;They’re very talented.&8221;

Hope said that he, along with the rest of the Eagle seniors, are simply happy to be playing another week.

&8220;This means so much to me and to all of the seniors,&8221; he said.

&8220;This program hasn’t always played the greatest. I just want to go out this week, make the most of practice and come out and win another game.&8221;