FMS Rockets show spark in 22-8 loss

Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Forrest's Jesse Pruitt (4) catches the pass from Jacob Jones and gets a block from Tyler Adcock (35) on his way to the endzone for a fourth quarter touchdown. Tribune photo by Anthony S. Puca

The Forrest Middle School Rockets fell to 0-3 on the season Thursday night at the "Rock" after a 22-8 loss to Moore County, but showed some signs of definite improvement as they had a chance to win up until less than four minutes to go in the ballgame.

After a Jacob Jones to Jesse Pruitt, 15-yard touchdown throw and catch, followed by a bruising two-point conversion run by Landen Jones cut the Moore County lead to 14-8 late in the fourth quarter, Moore County's Spencer Reese broke the Chapel Hill fans' hearts with an 82-yard touchdown jaunt with 3:06 remaining in the ballgame.

"We have shown improvement," said FMS head coach Bart Joyce after the game. "But, we have got to gut it out and do it for four quarters. In that second half, we played hard and if we can put it together and play like that, we can win some ballgames."

Boone Sweeney (61) comes up to wrap up Moore County's Mason Henshaw (34).

The Rocket defense was stout to begin the game as they bent but did not break on the first drive of the contest by Moore County.

The Raiders got the ball on an onsides kick and put together an eleven play drive that ate up most of the first quarter, driving inside the FMS ten-yard line and down to the two as the Rockets' defense made a couple of big stops and held firm on a fourth down play to take over on downs.

The Rockets could not muster any offense and gave up the football after three plays.

Moore County took over at the FMS 43-yard line and this time the Raiders drove it into the Rockets' endzone on an eight-play drive, capped off by a 34-yard touchdown run by Mason Henshaw.

Forrest's Payton Sisk intercepted the two-point pass attempt in the endzone, making it 6-0 Moore County with 2:28 remaining in the first half.

The Rockets had to punt again and the half was over with the Raiders still up by six over the Rockets.

The beginning of the second half was a carbon copy of the first as the Raiders took the ball and drove it all the way to the FMS 25-yard line when on third and eight, Tyler Adcock stepped up in the hole and stoned the Raider ball carrier.

On fourth down, Moore County tried a pass, but Sisk was there for the breakup and the Rockets took over on downs.

The FMS offense could not move the ball out of the shadow of their goal line and had to punt after three plays.

On first down and ten from the FMS 45-yard-line, Reese ran the ball in for six points and then ran in the two-point conversion, giving Moore County a 14-0 lead with 1:46 remaining in the third quarter.

The final quarter began with the Rockets holding a third down and long near midfield.

Landen Jones (21) barrels his way for a first down versus Moore County as the FMS fullback would rush for 43 yards on nine carries, all coming in the second half.

Landen Jones barreled his way to a fourth and one at the MC 45-yard line and on the next play, Jones busted up the gut for a first down.

Jones and Joseph Williams kept the ground game going as they took turns running down to the Raiders' 15-yard line before Jacob Jones found a wide open Pruitt in the endzone for a touchdown.

Landen Jones finished off the drive with the two-point conversion and the Rockets were fired up and back in the ballgame.

Forrest's defense was holding as Moore County faced a third and two, deep inside FMS territory at the 19-yard line, but Reese sealed the Rockets' fate on the next snap with the 82-yard scamper down the visitors' sideline for the touchdown.

Case Harper tossed the two-point conversion pass to Cody Ridner and the Raiders led 22-8.

That would be the final score, as the Rockets could not make the comeback.

FMS travels to Westwood Thursday before returning to Chapel Hill on September 8 for Homecoming versus Eagleville.