Fork Union Opens Season with Victory over John Paul the Great
Friday, September 1, 2023
FORK UNION, VA – The Fork Union Military Academy Prep football team opened the season with a 26-25 win over Saint John Paul the Great Catholic High School Friday at the Stadium Field.
The win gave first-year head coach Eddie Handsome his first-career victory at the helm of his alma mater.
"The victory was felt before the clock hit zero Friday," said Handsome. "I reminded the team about how we came to the phrase LOCKED IN. It's about being focused, present in the moment, and for the players willing to be selfless in their play for the team. They were told, this is only one step in the right direction and for that I am proud of you. We are Fork Union built in BODY, MIND AND SPIRIT and that is why we are LOCKED IN."
Both teams started the day out strong, trading touchdowns in the first quarter. John Paul the Great scored on its first possession of the game, while Fork Union retaliated with a 66-yard punt return by Alexander Abron to trail by one (7-6). The Wolves' defense made a big play at the end of the first quarter on a safety that gave John Paul the Great the 9-6 lead after the first 12 minutes.
Fork Union was the lone team to find the endzone in the second quarter. The Blue Devils made it a 14-9 ballgame when Emerson Smith rushed for eight yards and converted on the two-point conversion.
John Paul the Great took back the lead in the third quarter on a four-yard rush plus a two-point conversion that made it a 17-14 ballgame heading into the final quarter.
Fork Union secured the win on back-to-back touchdowns runs early in the fourth that gave the Blue Devils the 26-17 lead. John Paul the Great threatened with a late touchdown and two-point conversion but it was not enough to overcome Fork Union.
Smith led the Blue Devils offensively, completing 12 of 22 passes for 109 yards, while rushing for three touchdowns.
Defensively, Fork Union held John Paul the Great to 44 yards rushing.
The Blue Devils have dropped the past two games, sitting 1-2 on the early season.
The squad returns to action Friday, September 22 when they travel to Collegiate School for a 4 p.m. kickoff.
Fork Union Defeats Ferrum College in Overtime
Sunday, September 3, 2023
FERRUM, VA – The Fork Union Military Academy Postgraduate football team came up with a thrilling 34-33 overtime win at Ferrum College this past Sunday at W.B. Adams Stadium.
"It was an exciting game this past Sunday at Ferrum College," said head coach Frank Arritt. "We had a good day offensively with Breon Gunnell, Andre Harrison, Da'Quanvion Hill and Nehemiah Vann all getting into the endzone. The offensive line is progressing with each game. Defensively, Jahiel Mitchell had an interception and Zion Hunter led the team in tackles. Asa Locks also had blocks on PAT and a field goal."
The two teams had impressive offenses throughout the entire day in a game that consisted of four lead changes.
Fork Union found itself down 14-6 at halftime and came out in the second half ready to fight. The squad opened the second quarter with an impressive 90-yard scoring drive down field that was eventually capped off by a 30-yard touchdown and a two-point conversion to tie the score at 14.
Following a late third-quarter score by Ferrum, Fork Union took a one-point lead early in the fourth off a 10-yard touchdown by Hill. After an interception by Mitchell, Fork Union capitalized on a 10-yard rush by Harrison to make take a 27-20 lead midway through the fourth quarter.
Late in the fourth quarter, Ferrum forced the extra period with a rushing touchdown to tie the score at 27-27.
During overtime, Ferrum scored first on a rushing touchdown, but the Fork Union defense remained strong with a blocked extra point that eventually was the deciding factor of the victory. Hill secured the win for the Blue Devils on a rushing touchdown followed by a successful point-after attempt by Vann.
The Blue Devils have fallen to Christopher Newport University and Averett University and sit 1-2 overall.
Fork Union returns to action Sunday, September 10 when the squad travels to Christopher Newport University for a 12 p.m. kickoff.
Fork Union Gets Best Start in Years; Team Finishes 8th at Knights Crossing
Saturday, September 9, 2023
ROANOKE, VA -- The Fork Union Military Academy cross country team opened the season with its best start in years, placing eighth overall at the Knights Crossing Invitational at Cave Spring High School.
"It's a great day to get a measure of the progress we have made as team since the same time a year ago," said head coach Winston Brown. "David Eaton was tremendous as he now ranks as the No. 2 freshman in Virginia, all classifications. Sophomores Robert Callahan and Nicholas Coleman earned huge personal bests as did Ben Burtram. For Callahan, Saturday marked a 7-minute improvement since his effort a year ago at the same meet. Fork Union also discovered it has a solid fifth man in freshman Ronan Montes. It was a great start for us!"
Freshman David Eaton led the way for Fork Union with a time of 16:41.90 to place fifth place overall. Sophomore Robert Callahan followed with a top-32 finish with a time of 18:27.30. Sophomore Nicholas Coleman finished at the 19:05.50 mark to place 60th and senior Benjamin Burtram rounded out the top four for the Blue Devils with a time of 19:22.00 to place 73rd out of a pool of 259 participants.
Fork Union placed eighth with a total of 250 points. Bassett High School took the top spot with a total of 120 points. Wilson Memorial, Lee High School, North Cross School, Jefferson Christian Academy, Waynesboro High School and Patrick County placed in the top seven, respectively.
The Blue Devils return to action Saturday, September 16 when they host the 26th annual Invitational at Fork Union. The first race starts at 8:30 a.m. at the Fred Hardy Cross Country Course.