Obstacle 1: the humidity.
“We had a lot of guys cramping,” said Friendship head coach John McNeal. “It was humid, more than it’s been… so I was very proud of our kids as they responded well.”
Obstacle 2: a shaky start.
After taking the early lead on a Justin Seagraves’ touchdown – the first of his four on the night – the Commanders gave up a 59-yard pass to the Wildcats on the first play of the following drive. After a Jajuan Foutch fumble on the next drive, the Wildcats took the lead on an 11-yard touchdown pass.
The Wildcats took a 20-19 lead into halftime, where McNeal challenged his team to be better.
“We felt like the first half was a boxing match,” said McNeal. “We lost the first quarter and we won the second quarter. Who’s going to come out in the second half, which way is it going to go?”
His team responded positively. The secondary, which gave up 111 pass yards in the first half, allowed just 48 yards and seven points in the second half.
“We had a couple break downs. That happens sometimes,” said McNeal. “But we knew [that] and our defensive staff made some changes. Our secondary just decided it wasn’t going to get beat again. That’s all there was to it.”
A bright spot for the Commanders’ offense was its two tailbacks, Seagraves and Foutch, who finished with 114 and 139 yards, respectively. Foutch, who had touchdown runs of 44 and 50 yards, dealt with an elbow injury all week, leading to two fumbles on the night. Despite the turnovers, McNeal was proud of Foutch.
“[Jajuan], I don’t know what to say. I mean the guy hasn’t practiced all week making sure his elbow was fine,” said McNeal. “He had to make sure he was good with the brace and with the doctors and you saw what he was able to do. He’s a game changer.”
The Commanders return home next week when they take on Ezell-Harding Christian School.
Friendship Christian 47, Donelson Christian 27
Friendship 13 6 21 7—47
DCA 20 0 7 0—27
FS—Seagraves 10 run (Kane kick missed) 9:28.
FS—Seagraves 4 run (Kane kick good) 5:11.
DCA—Mosley 59 pass to Oakley (kick blocked) 9:11
DCA—Mosley 11 pass to Oakley (kick good) 7:07.
DCA—Troup 2 run (kick good).
FS—Foutch 45 run (2-pt conversion no good) 3:48.
FS—Reece 26 pass to Seagraves (2pt conversion good, Reese to Jamison) 10:46.
FCS—Foutch 50 run (Kane kick good) 7:30.
FCS—Reece 25 run (kick failed) 2:31.
DCA—Mosley 9 run (kick good) 4:31.
FCS—Seagraves 4 run (Kane kick good) 5:48.
Rushes-yards 39-351 29-91
Passing yards 98 159
Comp.-Att. 4-7 11-22
Fumbles-lost 3-3 1-1
RUSHING—Friendship: Seagraves 21-114, Foutch 14-139, Reese 9-52, Jamison 3-9
DCA: Covington 4-10, Mosley 8-28, Troup 12-46
PASSING—Friendship: Reese 4-7-98
DCA: Mosley 11-22-159
RECEIVING—Friendship: Seagraves 2-28, Jamison 1-45, Bostian 1-15
DCA: Oakley 2-70, Troup 1-5, Greenway 4-72, Austin 1-6, Francis 3-1