Pats ruin Pleasant Home
By Josh Dutton
Andalusia Star News
The top-ranked Linden Patriots (11-1) ended the Pleasant Home Eagles’ historic playoff run Friday night in the second round of the AHSAA 1A playoffs with a 41-0 shutout.
Pleasant Home had a tough time dealing with the size and speed of the Patriots on both sides of the ball.
“This Linden team was really big and fast and they had a great game plan for us,” Pleasant Home head coach Ronnie Douglas said. “We just weren’t able to get guys where we needed to.”
Marquis Shelton got the scoring started for the Patriots on an 11-yard run that was his first of three touchdowns. The short run was set up after Shelton returned a Pleasant Home punt 35 yards to the Eagle 11-yard line.
Julian Little got in on the action when he scored his first touchdown of the night. He picked off a Gabe Gunter pass on the next play from scrimmage and returned it 23 yards for the score, giving the Patriots a 14-0 lead.
After the Patriots’ defense forced a punt from the Pleasant Home offense on the next possession, Shelton hauled in a 62-yard touchdown catch from Anthony Robinson for his third touchdown of the first quarter, extending the lead to 20-0.
Following a third Pleasant Home punt, the Patriot offense chewed up some clock on an 11-play, 67-yard drive that lasted just over five minutes. Little punched it in from 8 yards out to give the Patriots a 26-0 lead with no time left in the first half.
Robinson tacked on another score with his second passing touchdown of the game when he found Terris Lewis all alone in the end zone a fourth-and-six play from the Pleasant Home 24-yard line, increasing the lead to 32-0.
After another Pleasant Home punt, Robinson added his first rushing touchdown and third overall on the night with a 7-yard quarterback scramble.
The Pleasant Home defense forced a fumble from Shelton and Gunter was able to fall on it for Pleasant Home. The Eagles were unable to produce any points from the turnover.
On the Patriots’ next possession, the Pleasant Home defense forced a second turnover with a fumble, but recovered the ball with their heels up against their own goal line. After two plays of little gain, John Newby found himself unable to get out of his own end zone and was brought down for a safety, giving the Patriots a final score of 41-0.
Robinson finished the night 8-for-8 through the air for 150 yards. Little led the ground attack with 66 yards on 11 carries.
Shelton added 94 receiving yards on four catches and 56 rushing yards on eight carries. Jamal Lewis had 62 yards on six carries.
Linden will host Maplesville in round three next Friday night.