Pike Liberal Arts falls in flag-filled game

Published 11:17 pm Thursday, September 20, 2012

Drew Starling attempts to wrestle down a Macon-East player on Thursday night. (Photo/Wes Johnson)

30 penalties, 11 unsportsmanlike conduct fouls, two ejections, and one Pike Liberal Arts touchdown.

The most exhausted people walking off the field of Thursday night’s 28-7 Macon-East win were easily the officials.

In a game that saw little offensive production, penalty flags kept the ball moving in one direction or another.

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The Knights (4-1) controlled the game from the start. The opening kickoff was returned for a touchdown, but a holding call brought it back to the Macon-East 22. Noland McNeely took the first play from scrimmage 70 yards to the Pike 3. Two plays later, Peyton Whittle opened the scoring from 1-yard out, giving Macon-East the 7-0 advantage.

Pike (1-4) would punt after its first drive stalled and Whittle returned it 80 yards to the Patriots 10. Immediately, Kyle White took the handoff and scored, laying claim to a 14-0 lead just seven minutes into the contest.

Macon-East forced the Patriots to go three-and-out before White scampered 53 yards for what would have been a touchdown, but to no one’s surprise a penalty nullified the play.

Four plays later, White would find the end zone with 1:18 left in the opening quarter on a 25-yard run padded the Knights lead to 21-0.

After scoring on its first three possessions, Macon-East would punt and fumble on its final two drives of the first half.

Things wouldn’t get much better for the Knights as they turned the ball over on their first two possessions of the second half, but the Patriots could not capitalize.

Macon-East would extend its lead with 2:10 in the third quarter on a 11-yard run from White.

The game seemed to spiral out of control as six unsportsmanlike penalties were thrown in a two minute span.

After order was restored, Pike drove the ball 72 yards scoring on a 14-yard pass from quarterback Russ Thomas to Dustin Newman.

Macon-East out-gained Pike 259-122. The teams combined for 170 yards in penalties on 30 penalties, many of which were offsetting.

Pike will be back in action on Sept. 28 when they travel to Escambia Academy to face former Charles Henderson head coach Hugh Fountain.

Game time is 7 p.m.