Ashburn, Va. — In an early season showdown, the Briar Woods Falcons (0-0, 2-0) defended their house during their home opener in a 27-14 victory over the Loudoun County Captains (1-0, 1-1). The Falcons came out of the locker room firing on all cylinders, however, they had to survive a late rally from the Captains to close out the game.
The Falcons opened the game with a long drive that ended in a 1-yard quarterback sneak from junior quarterback Brady Carmical. Briar Woods took the early 7-0 lead and didn’t look back in the first half.
“We started off fast,” Carmical said. “Our defense stepped up, and our offensive line started getting it together.”[adrotate banner=”46″]
On a fourth down inside Captains’ territory, the Falcons extended their lead with a 35-yard reception from junior receiver Anthony Joyce. That drive was led by junior running back Trey Dudley, who dominated the run game for the Falcons. At 6-foot-2, 205 pounds, Dudley is bigger than some defensive lineman which allows him to use his strength to pick up the extra couple of yards at the end of his runs.
Heading into halftime, the Falcons led 13-0. The offense was able to move up and down the field, while the defense didn’t settle with the early lead.
Opening up the second half, it was more of the same from Briar Woods. With just over eight minutes to go in the third quarter Carmical picked up his fourth rushing touchdown of the year in highlight reel fashion.
On a third down at their own 38-yard line, Briar Woods ran a designed quarterback run where Carmical was able to weave his way through the defenders and bounce the play out to the right sideline. Carmical then turned on the jets and ran the entire 62 yards to the house.
“I was thinking to get six yards, but then I saw a lane and ran as fast as I could,” Carmical said. “I got to give it to my line. I was untouched.”
The long run put the Falcons up 20-0 midway through the third quarter. With the momentum on their side, Briar Woods started to falter, letting up a rushing touchdown on the following drive from Loudoun County senior quarterback Aiden Ballve.
The fourth quarter began with the Falcons up 27-7. Down by 20, it was time for the Captains to put everything they had into the final twelve minutes. The Loudoun County offense continued to find success, especially in the run game. Sophomore running back Montez Dyson was the lead back for the Captains and scored a rushing touchdown from seven yards out on the very next possession, to cut the lead to 13.
On the following kickoff, confusion and miscommunication from the Falcons allowed the Captains to recover a muffed kickoff in a wild sequence of events. This set up the Captains in good field position with just under six minutes to go.
On 2nd-and-9 from just outside the redzone, Ballve dropped back to pass and rolled out to his right. On a pass intended for his receiver, the ball was bobbled in the air and fell into the hands of Briar Woods junior cornerback Colin Capistrant, helping to seal the 27-14 win for the Falcons.
After a close win against Woodgrove in week one, Loudoun County will look to bounce back when they host Tuscarora on September 8. The Falcons will play hosts Ashburn-rival Broad Run on the same night.
“We still have to work,” Carmical said. “We have to go watch film and get better tomorrow. We have to lock in.”