Oak Mountain takes season-opening win

By DREW GRANTHUM/Sports Editor

A strong running game carried the Oak Mountain Eagles to their first win of the season in their first game, as the Eagles took down Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa 28-26 on Aug. 29.

The Patriots kicked the scoring for the contest off midway through the first when Cahlil Ellis took a 2-yard run in for a touchdown. The extra point was no good, and Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa took a 6-0 lead with 7:28 left in the first quarter.

Oak Mountain answered with a Warren Shader 12-yard run for a touchdown. D.J. Garver’s extra point was good, and the Eagles led 7-6 with 3:58 left in the first quarter.

The Patriots answered with a field goal to take a 9-6 lead late in the first quarter.

The Patriots extended their lead with a touchdown pass midway through the second quarter. Following the extra point, Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa took a 16-7 lead, with around eight minutes to play in the half.

Oak Mountain responded with a 22-yard touchdown pass from Warren Shader to Daniel Salchert, closing to within two points after the extra point.

With under three minutes to play in the first half and the Eagles in possession of the football, Josh Gaines broke a 60-yard run for a touchdown. The point after was good, and the Eagles led 21-16.

Neither team scored again in the half, and the Eagles took the lead into halftime.

Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa scored the first points after half, nailing a field goal to pull within 21-19 midway through the third.

The Eagles answered with a score of their own, as Harold Shader broke a 26-yard run for a touchdown. Garver added another extra point, and the Eagles held a 28-19 lead late in the third quarter.

A touchdown pass brought the Patriots within three points early in the fourth, with the extra point making the score 28-26.

Fortunately for the Eagles, it was all the scoring either team did, as Oak Mountain hung on for the win.

Stats were unavailable at press time. The Eagles return home for a showdown with Vestavia Hills Sept. 5.